• Doug Most

    Assistant VP, Executive Editor, Editorial Department Twitter Profile

    Doug Most is a lifelong journalist and author whose career has spanned newspapers and magazines up and down the East Coast, with stops in Washington, D.C., South Carolina, New Jersey, and Boston. He was named Journalist of the Year while at The Record in Bergen County, N.J., for his coverage of a tragic story about two teens charged with killing their newborn. After a stint at Boston Magazine, he worked for more than a decade at the Boston Globe in various roles, including magazine editor and deputy managing editor/special projects. His 2014 nonfiction book, The Race Underground, tells the story of the birth of subways in America and was made into a PBS/American Experience documentary. He has a BA in political communication from George Washington University. Profile

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There are 83 comments on Myths vs. Facts: Making Sense of COVID-19 Vaccine Misinformation

  1. I really wish there were more informative articles like this in order to fight with facts against all that misinformation that has invaded the Internet and Social Networks.

    1. This is 80% fact 20% plain wrong, and also pushes the plain unknown with total confidence, I recomend you look at the numbers in the uk of deaths from covid after vaccination, from start feb, to aug 8th 2021 the deaths of people vaccinated outnumber those not!!!! DONT BELIEVE ME LOOK YOURSELF,

  2. The third myth needs a correction. 7525/164,000,000 = 0.00004588 which translates to 0.004588%, not 0.00003 percent.

    Correct the math. Mistakes like these are what discredits this from being a legit scientific article.

    1. But isn’t it still LESS THAN 1 PERCENT? You’re making it as though it’s 10 percent but they put 0.00003 percent. Point is the rate is extremely low…But I bet you have friends/family who believe otherwise. I am Vaccinated and work in a County Jail. Got mine in January and February 2021. And we are MASK MANDATED. I like this article. New England Journal of Medicine is pretty much in line with this article and so is Johns Hopkins.

      1. No matter how much you correct there will be people who don’t believe you and will not get the vaccine. I have a friend that refuses the vaccine and insist people have died from the vaccine so when i ask where is the proof , now she will not speak to me lol …..

    2. It is likely that the author of the article made the mistake of adding the percent sign when it was not a percentage in the CDC report. Writers will make mistakes, and without proof readers, they are less likely to be caught. It was amazing that the author made a correction without correcting the original mistake. But the mistake likely only influence those who are determined anti-vacs.

  3. My husband and I are seniors. We have 4 children who have been thankfully vaccinated. None of our grandchildren have been. Two of our grandchildren have had Covid. They say they have antibodies and don’t need the vaccine!!! One is a travelling RN and does not want to be vaccinated. One is getting married and his future wife and he are not getting vaccinated. This is very disturbing. We will be masked at the wedding for our safety. The article is so informative and I will send it along to everyone including our entire family.

  4. What do you say to the folks that believe the reason this is the first mRNA vaccine is because it had proven unsafe in all of their studies since it’s discovery? Has the mRNA tested safely in humans prior to these vaccines?

  5. Please address the use of the VAERS data base as proof that the vaccines are killing people. I know many who claim the vaccine kills people, and the VAERs site is clear but not as clear as it could be about that data.

    1. I second this request. I live and work in a rural community and this VAERS concern is coming up again and again with colleagues and with students at the community college where I work. People in my community do not understand that the reports are not necessarily caused by the vaccine and are scared.

      1. The problem with VAERS data is that we do not know what the data mean either way which is why the data should be interpreted with caution. But to be fair, the HHS is collecting these data for the expressed purpose of using these data as an early warning system to detect possible safety problems with the vaccines. One of the purposes is to Identify potential patient risk factors for particular types of adverse events. If you are a person with risk factors for particular types of adverse events identified by this tracking system you should absolutely discuss your concerns with your doctor.

  6. My issue is this. I am not sure who to trust. You guys tell me that all the misinformation is only from the anti vaccine people. Am I to believe there is no misinformation coming out from the pro vaccine folks? This government that runs our country and has continuously lied to me and you, we are just supposed to believe them now? These same people pushing this vaccine were the same people telling us all they would not get it if it was told to by the previous administration. What has changed? Is the vaccine different now than it was before? I am no supporter of Trump. And this is not political for me at all. I just have a hard time figuring out who to trust.

    1. Hi Stephen,
      I think what is important to keep in mind is that leading private medical institutions are advocating for the vaccine, along with the CDC the FDA and other government organizations. So it’s not just a big government agenda. I also think it is worthwhile that many leading individuals against the vaccine financially benefit from their own agenda. Here is a really great article from NPR :https://www.npr.org/2021/05/13/996570855/disinformation-dozen-test-facebooks-twitters-ability-to-curb-vaccine-hoaxes

      Also here is the original report: https://252f2edd-1c8b-49f5-9bb2-cb57bb47e4ba.filesusr.com/ugd/f4d9b9_b7cedc0553604720b7137f8663366ee5.pdf

      Also you may want to please post some articles supporting your statement: // These same people pushing this vaccine were the same people telling us all they would not get it if it was told to by the previous administration//. I personally don’t recall Democrats taking that positing during Trump’s administration, but I am willing to be wrong.

      I think a critical question to ask is, why would a Democratic-led government benefit from promoting disinformation at this point? Also, why have the Republicans chosen to politicize and weaponize not getting the vaccination (or wearing masks)? While I am not a Trump supporter, I do believe that if he remained in office that he and Republicans would take a very different position on getting vaccinations. I think it simply serves them to sow discord right now by taking a mostly anti-vax stance. I suspect if he were in office he would be totally leveraging the fact that the vaccine was developed under his administration (not I did not say “by” his administration). To say that I am disappointed by the lack of bipartisan leadership on this is a vast understatement. But please don’t let the politicization of this issue sway you from doing a deep dive into non-partisan facts and non-partisan vaccination advocates.

      1. Hi Tanya, thanks for sounding so reasonable! I responded to a couple of these letters and have to keep emphasizing this is not a political issue–as you also realize. Government does care alot about horrible pandemic due to many problems it causes. Kids not getting to go to school, hospital bed shortages, economy and national debt all affected alot. Shortages of chips used making our new cars, costs to public of huge hospital bills–no one can pay the million $$ it could cost to be in a ICU a few weeks. These comments from me are not at all directed at you or your letter–I’m just so impacted and sad, bored and lonely here in Calif. when all gatherings, are outdoor music, festivals, etc.are cancelled and I’m all alone–no family around that I can be with either. Reading these I get upset so I need to help give good information too. Everything will keep costing us all more as long as pandemic rages on among un-vaccinated.Alot of highly un-educated people in my county so vax rate is below 50% still.

      2. “…leading private medical institutions are advocating for the vaccine, along with the CDC the FDA and other government organizations. So it’s not just a big government agenda.”

        Correct, not “just” a big government agenda. Privatized medicine has already received a plethora of publicly documented kickbacks from the government, specifically to combat this, in the billions. I’d say that’s a pretty big agenda for them too, wouldn’t you? Furthermore, I previously worked directly with the CDC for months, and can verify it is -incredibly- skewed in their political leanings. Doesn’t bother me, but it’s there, in excess.

        “…why would a Democratic-led government benefit from promoting disinformation at this point?”
        Well, I’d say the billions worth of lobbyist money might – you know – potentially be considered a benefit?

        Direct from Pfizer’s own website:

        “Our lobbying priorities consider the interests of our company, shareholders, employees and other stakeholders. Pfizer’s federal and state lobbying priorities focus on trade, healthcare, access to prescription drugs and patent protection, all of which directly impact our business and shareholder value.”

        https://www.pfizer.com/purpose/contributions-partnerships/political-partnerships

        I 100% support vaccines. Vaccines work. Also, not all vaccines are equal; in importance, or necessity. Pretending like this is all some sort of non-partisan vaccine push, and that this dramatization from government/big pharm stems purely from their sincerity and compassion for our safety, is utter bs. It’s always been about either the money, or the god complex/pride/position of politicians; yes, Trump included. It wouldn’t be a talking point if it wasn’t.

        On that note, the resistance that exists has nothing to do with Trump. It has to do with the government itself; whether it’s Trump, or Biden, or George Washington… anyone leveraging their position to exert authority over a nation, directly against freedoms, without restraint. No, no one trusts the “experts” when they literally contradict themselves on a daily basis. And no, no one trusts the “data” when false COVID-related death numbers from privatized medicine are submitted to either a) dramatically inflate ratios, or b) garner more financial aid from the government. The difference isn’t about which party won the presidency, it’s about the difference in how each party would have chosen to approach. The majority left in office has swung so far into fanatical beliefs and policies that there is hardly even any connection with its own party anymore. Those that have maintained that connection, were indoctrinated into the fanaticism. They’re propelling beliefs and policies that the exact same political leaders challenged, not even a handful of years before.

        Let’s get real here. Countless far left institutions, obnoxious people/organizations want(ed) “Trumpers” dead – or in prison – for years. Anyone who feels that statement is hyperbolic, either hasn’t seen the news, or has had 0% exposure to political discourse over the past 5 years. Newsreels spun 24/7, for years, spewing complete vitriol, contempt, and hate for any Republican that had(has) any differing opinions. Media constantly rails against them, hell even this article is littered with comments denigrating their beliefs regarding information that still isn’t even proven. Now, the expectation is that those individuals are supposed to blindly believe this society – and this administration – suddenly gives a damn about their health? To a point where it should be allowed to forcibly cram mandates down everyone’s throats, maintaining a perpetual state of emergency for every. single. variant.? That is a completely unreasonable expectation.

        If anyone thought this wasn’t going to be a massively polarizing issue, on every level, for every political leaning, they weren’t paying attention.

    2. Two things come to mind. 1. Follow the money. 2. Those who have nothing to hide have nothing to fear.

      Unfortunately, you cannot trust either the government or the self-proclaimed experts. You do need to examine the facts yourself and make a decision. Sometimes the government comes on top sometimes the experts. It all depends. Most of us do not have time to do that, and mandates remove any further incentive to do your own research anyways.

    3. I think a major point of the article is that these two scientists are giving their medical/professional responses to the questions being presented. You can look them up and decide for yourself if you think they have a political agenda, you can probably email them follow-up questions, shoot you can probably find someone that knows someone that knows them. These are not nameless pundits, but rather local experts.

    4. I am not big government. I, like you am tired of not knowing who to trust. I have not been vaccinated and recently recovered from a mild case. My wife had the Moderna and never caught it from me, she even went so far as to get tested and tested negative. I can only say what I’ve seen and hope it helps someone out there. Covid was not bad, at first I thought it was just an ear infection. 10th day after 1st symptoms it was over, just like the PA said when I got tested positive (the 6th day). I went on that day because it was the worst and I feared I needed antibiotics gor the ear infection. I first thought it was that because our daughter had one 2 weeks before (and tested negative for Corona so it was an ear infection). Anyways, my point being. Covid isn’t as bad as fear mongers make it, but the vaccine seemed to work as they say and in our case the side effects for my wife were easier to bear than if she had caught the virus. She had 2 days where her arm hurt and felt numb, and she was dizzy and fatigued, but at least no fever and no respiratory issues. Take it for whatever its worth. Talk to your doctor and if you think he’s a smart and honest guy then trust him, and if you don’t then get a different doctor.

      1. I’m glad it all worked out for you. I know of a family that was vaccinated, including grandma. Now, grandma is in hospital with Covid, but doing ok from last I heard. Mom and daugher – 10 – have tested positive, dad tested negative. They have an infant boy, not sure if he was tested, didn’t ask. Every case is different, nothing we “know” is typical. So much that is stil a mystery and unknown about this virus.

      2. I think you’re entirely missing the point that Covid, for many, is deadly or can at the least leave people with long lasting, ongoing major health issues. It’s more than a little ignorant to say that Covid isn’t as bad as people make out just because you were lucky enough to have mild symptoms from it.

  7. This article is NOT scientific and adds to the general misinformation or rather biased reporting of information. The whole point of not perpetuating misinformation is to actually give all relevant facts.

    Fact 1. In the clinical trials there was no control group. As it was decided unethical to not vaccinate all in the groups, there are no persons in these trials who did not get the vaccine, ergo the study is biased offering no base of comparison.

    Fact 3. CDC is not taking record of breakthrough cases, only the ones that lead to hospitalization or death. You are stating numbers that are basically useless.

    Fact 4. The answers are clearly demonstrating that the two interviewed dont know how to answer the questions. They are talking about incorporation of DNA etc, completely irrelevant. Waht was of concern is the expression of the protein, it has nothing to do with the cell nucleus.

    Fact 5. If you have any knowledge about how these things actually work then development of a molecule (todays mRNA vaccines) that produces a single protein to activate our immune system can never compare to the full envelope of proteins produced upon a real infection. With time our immune system does not wane, instead our bodies are genious and adapt so that instead of circulating antibodies the body keep a memory of them in form of T cells, easily re-activating antibody production when exposed to the different viral strains again. Read this article published in Science if you want to understand better.

    https://science.sciencemag.org/content/373/6556/eabh1766?fbclid=IwAR24mWP6frb8myaaM4_xlZWlr3QpdBbgO0x-DjM4N2H2E1IGx9sxBzmK4GE

    I am not against vaccines. I am a scientist and so fed up with this continous misinformation and your article is definitely continuing that tradition.

    1. To EVA thank you for your counter position however the article you reference is not an easy read no wonder people are confused. I’m no scientist. Plain English articles would help immensely so honestly seeking to understand more. I guess the question is am I better for taking the vaccine yes or no? What are the pros and cons given all vaccines carry risks?

    2. Fact 1. What you’re stating is false. People were given a placebo in the clinical trials. Earlier this year those people were told and some of them did get the vaccine. The data cant be used for long-term results, but that same data before placebo recipients were vaccinated is still valid.

      https://www.vox.com/22202902/covid-vaccine-pfizer-moderna-clinical-trial-placebo

      Fact 3. The CDC isn’t but local govts are. These numbers aren’t coming out of thin air. You’re paying attention to VAERS but there are is more data out there from localities that can be pieced together. Also, this is a question isn’t the prevention of hospitalizations and death the most important numbers when it comes to the efficacy of the vaccine? That would mean those are the most important numbers, and I agree with that.

      Fact 5. No layman is going to read that article and completely understand what they’re reading Mr. or Ms. Scientist. However, mRNA are “deleted” from our bodies so yes the vaccines are made for our bodies to lose it if they don’t use it. Like you said mRNA gives our body instruction based on 1 protein, however, that’s all that is needed to protect our bodies at a high rate.

      For anyone who wants to watch a common mans video about how mRNA work: https://youtu.be/mvA9gs5gxNY

      1. Many thanks for your link to the you tube video, which is both clear and informative. I think a pros and cons risk analysis for people across age groups would benefit our communities in making some informed decisions. In my own research a couple of questions have surfaced, which are as follows: Is the COVID vaccine still in clinical trials? Is the vaccine on the emergency use list, which I believe has something to do with obtaining licenses? There is much speculation (fact or fiction) on experimental use of vaccine on the general population.
        Seeking to understand.

        1. Hi Mike , again.
          i’m just worried you might become sick with covid while your are figuring out and learning about the cons . Think of the pros. No one I’ve talked with had any unusual problems from vaccines. I want regular haircuts, etc and not have all salons, barber shops closed again. Did your mom or friends cut your hair during closures?
          Thank you for reading these.

  8. The man who invented the mRNA technology while at the Salk Institute, Dr. Robert Malone, said the following about the coronavirus vaccines: “One of my concerns are that the government is not being transparent with us about what those risks are. And so, I’m of the opinion that people have the right to decide whether to accept a vaccine or not, especially since these are experimental vaccines”.

    He clarified that he was not discouraging the use of the vaccine but was providing people with as much fair information as he could about their risks.

    He also stated: “I can say that the risk-benefit ratio for those 18 and below doesn’t justify vaccines, and there’s a pretty good chance that it doesn’t justify vaccination in these very young adults.”

    Is the creator of this mRNA technology to be trusted or not trusted? Do the doctors in the above article know better than him?

    This is exactly why the subject is so confusing.

    1. Malone self describes himself as the inventor. Malone is just one of many scientists who contributed to mRNA vaccine research. One should examine his motives behind his expressed concerns about the vaccines.

    2. You may want to read this well-researched Atlantic piece from August 12, 2021:

      The Vaccine Scientist Spreading Vaccine Misinformation

      Robert Malone claims to have invented mRNA technology. Why is he trying so hard to undermine its use?

      By Tom Bartlett

  9. I’m a Respiratory Therapist who works in south eastern Virginia. This past week we’ve seen triple the amount of SEVERE Covid cases than at the worst from the first wave last year.
    Something is definitely different. And YES, we’ve seen a young patient as well.
    If this is any indication of what’s to come, we will run out of room and staff.
    Not to sound all gloom and doom but yes, people are believing the myths unfortunately.
    Several patients who have lost their lives in the past week have wished they would have been vaccinated.
    It has been a sad week indeed.
    When people started being vaccinated our Covid numbers dropped to almost nil. Medical science at it’s best!
    I dont know about strains and what the difference is but people need to heed the warnings. Vaccines work.

  10. In recent weeks, federal officials have backed away from their earlier assurances that almost all hospitalizations from the coronavirus are among unvaccinated people. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky has twice been asked this month by reporters if she stood by an earlier statement that 97 percent of people hospitalized by the virus are unvaccinated, and both times she acknowledged the data was out of date. Her agency has yet to produce new estimates.

    Breakthrough infections in vaccinated people accounted for at least one in five newly diagnosed cases in six of seven states investigated according to figures gathered by The New York Times.

    California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Oregon, Utah, Vermont and Virginia — were examined because they are keeping the most detailed data.

  11. As someone who has done extensive research on the COVID vaccines I feel that this very one-sided article chose to address only the most surface and fringe of “anti-vax”/vaccine hesitancy concerns, which benefits no one.

    There is no mention of the very eminent, pro-vaccine scientists who are begging the world to stop vaccinating because of the danger posed by vaccinating with “leaky” vaccines *during* a pandemic. No mention of VAERS data, one way or another. No mention of the spike protein traveling through the body or the body’s reaction to this (Japanese data). No mention of the data being published in well-renowned scientific, peer-reviewed journals such as Nature and The Lancet. Also, quoting Dr. Walensky’s comment from August 9th without noting that she was referencing deaths **over the last 6 months** (back to January, when virtually no one was vaccinated) is just poor reporting, and things like this discredit the article overall.

    Finally, rather than making fun of people who have concerns about microchips (asking Dr. Assoumou if she could keep a straight face when asked about those) maybe you could have actually clarified what Bill Gates meant when he started referencing “digital certificates”. That would have been far more helpful.

    If you want to combat genuine vaccine hesitancy, please address the actual concerns and research out there.

    1. I am a graduate of BU with an MPH and although I personally vaccinated, I do not believe vaccinating *healthy* children under 18 is morally acceptable given that large numbers of at risk people are unable to get the vaccine worldwide.

      As “K” stated earlier- this is a rather one sided article, addressing only most frivolous arguments for not getting vaccinated.

      I personally know several people including a doctor who chose not to get vaccinated. They do not all belong to the same political party so it’s not a political thing. Encourage people to seek medical advice about getting vaccinated.

      And remember- bloodletting, thalidomide, and other former medical advice at one time did turn out to have serious consequences.

  12. Funny how they find the cure for this covid crap in a very short period of time and yet all scientists, doctors or whatever you name them, they haven’t have had any cure for cancer… read my comments carefully and try and understand every word.. this is just the beginning of it!!!! There’s more to come sooner or later.. be aware.. look around you and see where the world at now?? Refer to the bible that was written before our ancestor it’s been mentioned in the bible that this bad scary things will happened.. we may say now it’s not that bad!!! Maybe today it’s not but tomorrow it will.. the beast will be unleashed soon… heads up!!!!

  13. Although I did get vaccinated, I was concerned about the long-term implications, given the fact that this is an experimental vaccination and continues to not be FDA approved.I decided that the pros outweigh the cons. For elderly and obese this in my opinion is factually true in almost all cases.

    Today, what is most concerning, is the lack of transparency, designed to maximize the rate of vaccination. Which is understandable, Perhaps from a greater good perspective?,, But in my opinion, this rationalization is not ethical. The term anti-VAXer is pejorative when there are those that have legitimate concerns. E.g. Rarely is the rate of reinfection publicized in those that have received the vaccine. Rarely, is myocarditis, Or inflammation of the heart in young people, discussed. It is a fact that the vaccination is causing myocarditis in youth, especially males. This complication is much higher rates than one would expect. The consequences of this in the future is not known. The list goes on and on particularly with regards to issues that no one can predict. Much of these questions are either marginalized, or censored, whereas there is very little censorship when pro vaccination information is disseminated, which may be biased or exaggerated, or without any merit at all. This lack of transparency in my opinion plays a substantial role in the hesitancy of some to seek the vaccination.

    Earlier in the comment section it mentions anti-VAXers benefit from doing so financially. I would argue that there are many that benefit from encouraging vaccination and that profit is probably far more relevant as an incentive to provaxers vs antivaxers. Drug companies, for example are making billions of dollars on the vaccine and certainly could be motivated to exaggerate its benefits. Corporations are not innocent. Refer back to the Ford pinto fiasco. Corporations give donations to politicians and in this case, most of their money is probably given to promote their product. I mean I think this is absolutely intuitive. I’m confident they are more likely to give money to a senator that will probably be very pro vaccine. I think this is rather obvious. Are politicians influenced by contributions? Are Politicians and people influenced by social media, or social pressure? Is a doctor potentially worried to not endorse vaccination even though they maybe haven’t been vaccinated themselves? Is a doctor potentially afraid of getting sued if they tell a patient to not get the vaccine and that patient then passes away from the disease? Do doctors behave defensively. If you have 100 doctors in a major medical health system, are they permitted to practice medicine the way they see fit or is there influence from the top and the bottom line.

    In conclusion, there are multiple issues that make decision making very problematic with regards to the vaccination. While I have chosen to be vaccinated, in my discussions with friends, we talk about informed consent. You need to know the risks and benefits, alternative treatments, and the risks of not being vaccinated, in order to make a good decision. This risk benefit analysis is vastly different depending on your health status, age, etc. for example, in my opinion, here in the United States, a 13-year-old boy who has no medical problems whatsoever, probably has a higher risk of being harmed by the vaccine than being harmed with the virus, but that is simply my opinion based on what I’ve read. Every age category and situation needs to be taken into account and the lack of transparency makes this decision very difficult for parents and very difficult for people in general to figure out what to do. There is no doubt that when profits are this high across-the-board both politically and financially, finding the truth becomes much more challenging.

    1. Larry,

      Your comments are exceptional, rational, and extremely reasonable. I haven’t heard/seen anyone write these thoughts out so well for both sides. I concur in every aspect.

      My mother received the vaccine, she has bone cancer (metastatic from breast in 2018), takes many immune boosting supplements, and she typically tolerates medications well. She did well with the vaccine. After a long discussion between all of us (family), as much research as possible, and speaking with our doctors, she made this decision that was best for her.

      I had breast cancer in 2018 (1 month after my mom), mine at the time was much worse, so we thought, and I found out I was extremely sensitive and allergic to medications, all adhesives. I had a lot of complications from 6 long surgeries over the next 9 months, and nothing about my body has been the same. I’m also having to take hormone therapy drugs for 10 years instead of 5, because I’m “so young”, and I’ve had a very hard time with this medication. After having the same discussion with my family (knowing how I react to medications), I also take many immune boosting supplements, and since I had Covid in late December, I decided with the support of my family not to get the vaccine at this time. I also do not get the flu vaccine because I had a bad reaction about 8 years ago.

      To read and hear the bashing by everyone for making a choice (for now, that I feel is right for me), and for my family is hard to take on a daily basis. I’ve also been out of work since Nov 2020 after receiving my master’s degree last March. I’ve submitted hundreds of resumes, and recently on 2 applications the question of whether I’ve received the vaccine has appeared. Just another blow. It’s unfortunate that people with legitimate concerns are being shamed and forced into situations to do something to their bodies. Long term implications can’t possibly be known, regardless of what anyone reports, because the vaccine hasn’t been given long enough. You’re also correct, my mother at 68, benefits and life expectancy with bone cancer may outweigh… but I’m 47.

      The greater good for me isn’t worth it, if I happen to be that one person who takes it and reacts fatally, leaving behind 3 children, their significant others that I love as my own, and my 6 year old grandchildren . Rare or not, I want to wait for now and I should have that God given right.

      Thank you for sharing your perspective.

    2. My company provided the link to this article as a way to “debunk” vaccine concerns. I appreciate their diligence in trying to supplement the information out there with sources they felt were credible. I have to admit, I have really enjoyed the persepectives and science from both sides of the fence, in the comments discussions. I have found them helpful and enlightening.

      But your comment- I must give an amen, Amen and AMEN to!

      I have chosen to be unvaccinated up to this point and cannot tell you how many times I have been labeled with the pejorative “anti-vaxxer” and categorized into the box labeled “those people”. I might also add, I researched a lot (and continue to do so) when making the decision to not be vaccinated. I have been working out in the public since June 2020 and have never had COVID or tested positive for COVID.
      .
      I do think there is one point which isn’t mentioned much in the discussion string, which is a contributing factor to vacinnation debate. It is the simply the right to determine what goes into your own body.

      There is an alarming and increasing trend of being “blackmailed” into receiving the vaccine because if you don’t:
      1) You will not be employed by the Company you currently work for.
      2) You will have to pay more for your health insurance than other people
      3) You will not be able to eat in a restaurant or shop in a certain store or business
      4) You will not be able to travel to certain places (which is a real challenge when you travel for your work)
      5) Your custody/visitation rights are being rescinded by judges who say you must be vaccinated to be around your children.
      6) Your children won’t be allowed in the classroom to be schooled, but must maintain virtual education.
      etc…

      When has that ever happened for a vaccination against a contagion that approximately 96-98% of the population will recover from and the vast majority have a minor or asymptomatic response to? (per Worldometers.info/coronavirus/ as of today’s date).

      As of Today USA has 8,372,665 Active cases of COVID-19 – 25,615 of them are reported as Serious/critical. That is .3% .

      This is one of the biggest reasons for my mistrust of taking one of the vaccines currently.

  14. The most disturbing myth is the vaccine will kill you and that thousands of deaths have been “hidden” by the government. This was not addressed. Please tell us if this is fact or myth.

    1. That is the biggest myth and that has been clearly disproved that it is no longer needs to be addressed. Have you heard of any elected officials from Trump on down that have died after receiving the vaccine? You have heard of elected officials that have died from COVIDS and weren’t vaccinated. What is disturbing is the number of politicians and talking heads that are myth and disinformation spreaders watching their supporters die from not being vaccinated. Hospitals in every state have exceeded their capacity with patients that have been infected with the virus and were NOT vaccinated. More deaths are being reported daily than from last year. As more people are getting vaccinated and the only people dying in large numbers are those that have been not been vaccinated. Check with your local pharmacies that are administering the vaccine. Check and verify your sources of information. Are they credible? Are they sponsored? Are they official? Is it first-hand information or just rumors? Go to the source and check with your local hospitals and medical providers. Talk to your doctor. Talk to nurses that work in the hospital. Check with your local funeral homes. Research obituaries.

  15. These comments give me no hope for humanity. You don’t believe the experts, you don’t believe the people actually IN THE HOSPITALS TAKING CARE OF ALL THESE UNVACCINATED PEOPLE, the ones who see it for themselves… the confirmation bias everyone has is absolutely overwhelming. Common sense and the ability to look beyond ourselves and only what directly affects us is completely gone.

    1. With all the opposing information I personally appreciate the anecdotal information from nurses and other health care workers who are actually in the hospitals with the infected. As ironic as that is all the “legitimate and empirical” evidence is always being contradicted by another source that is either legitimate itself or appearing to be. But when I’ve seen many nurses say that the hospitals are full and people are regretting not getting vaccinated as they die, it shows the reality of the situation OBJECTIVELY. Shannon the RN with two kids and a 700$ monthly mortgage payment has no reason to plead to the public to get vaccinated BESIDES she tired of seeing people die at work. That being said the vaccine isn’t an option for everyone. I’m 28 years old, I’m getting vaccinated tomorrow….. probably lol.

  16. How can anyone publish statistics as fact knowing in May the CDC stopped reporting and recommended vaccinated stop getting tested? Also, this was right as the majority was getting the 2nd shot in many cases, still wearing masks, etc., so wouldn’t it make some logical sense and could we entertain the thought, that perhaps the “new” surge started with vaccinated people taking their masks off, spreading the virus?

    We keep seeing articles posted regarding the “misinformation”, however when attempting to find articles on the vaccine, the only ones you can typically find through traditional means such as Google, are ones like this, that only tell what they want to tell, favorable to the vaccine. If you want to educate yourself to make an informed decision you really have to dig to find information that is valid and useful from differing prospectives in the health community (like go to your own doctor and have a private conversation).

    “Still, the exact rates of breakthrough cases are unknown at this time because cases may be asymptomatic and, until recently, the CDC didn’t recommend that vaccinated people be tested following exposure. For this reason, updated guidance states that vaccinated people should resume wearing a mask in indoor public areas, especially where there is high transmission of COVID-19.”

  17. Larry & Kim get my “vote” for the commenters who understand the real reasons behind “hesitancy”! As a former school teacher, I taught my students to think. One simple and effective tool towards this end is to – Compare and Contrast. (Make a list of the good and bad points surrounding and argument) The pro-vaccine contingent in this debate seem to have forgotten how to use this tool. The new, progressive version is now known as – Coerce and Castigate.

    I am not a scientist, but I was an educator (K-12). I taught my students to think, dig for facts, read BOTH sides of and argument, ask lots of questions and to of course, QUESTION EVERYTHING! (Like Fox Mulder always said, “…the truth is out there!) My 8th grade biology teacher also loved to remind us of the very most important part of a doctor’s hippocratic oath – First, Do No Harm!

    With the “data” for this article being so “sparse” and the readers having so few respected viewpoints from which to build knowledge, I offer this link from an article published today (08.25.21) in the journal “Trends in Internal Medicine”, written by J. Bart Classen, MD. The link is:
    https://www.scivisionpub.com/pdfs/us-covid19-vaccines-proven-to-cause-more-harm-than-good-based-on-pivotal-clinical-trial-data-analyzed-using-the-proper-scientific–1811.pdf

    and basically questions the “end points” used by the vaccine makers to demonstrate safety. For the non-scientific, it is a challenging read. For the “scientists” in the group, however – it’s message is as clear and easy to understand as elementary equation… 1 + 1 = 2

    Please read it (or at least try!) Talk to your doctor about it AND your health decisions.

    Finally, thank you BU for providing this space for an “All Viewpoints” discussion! Here is wishing sustained good health for ALL!

    1. Hi Bill, I’m the science editor here in BU’s newsroom. Thanks for your comment on our story. I clicked on the link and read the paper and noticed that the paper you linked to is not peer reviewed, meaning no one has checked/verified the author’s assertions or data. I did a little digging on the author, since he cites his own previous papers many times throughout this paper. The paper’s author, J. Bart Classen, is a well-known anti-vaxxer with a history of conducting experiments that do not follow scientific protocol and can whose results cannot be reproduced. He received a “Pants on Fire” designation for spreading misinformation from Politifact by the Poynter Institute: https://www.politifact.com/personalities/j-bart-classen/ and https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2021/feb/26/j-bart-classen/coronavirus-vaccine-doesnt-cause-alzheimers-als/

      1. Hi Kelly, laughing now at you–experimental vaccines!! WHAT? FDA, CDC-whoever-does not unleash or allow in any way experimental injected drugs for the public. I’m saying injectable since we all know–FDA has ok’d certain new meds for public and then short time later recalled and stopped these cuz they caused harm to some. You know-Vioxx and others–mostly NSAID pain meds. The ones i’m aware of. Point is -yes the FDA makes mistakes sometimes. This fast release of vaccines was deemed to be very important–sure was to me–prayed for vaccine to hurry up and be ready so I could stop worrying about getting super sick and hospitalized—I have weakened lungs-from past smoking and knew I could easily die–sure hope new surge now–August 2021 doesn’t infect me. Non-vaxers not helping anyone-I want to write mean things here about these people but its too rude. Sorry but seems like poorly educated people are holding up our recovery–yah-back to indoor masks now where I live. Limits alot of fun things to do and see. If people become very sick etc after the shots the FDA would not allow them to be used!

  18. Why does this article claim that having natural immunity ‘also means’ the virus remains inside your body even after you recover?: “”After people recover from infection with a virus, the immune system retains a memory of it,” the National Institutes of Health explains. it also means that even after you recover from COVID, it’s still inside your body and can resurface…”” Do they claim it’s like chicken pox or something? I feel like this has to be an error by the author because this would be a pretty serious claim, and cannot find anything about this specific assertion of natural immunity also meaning the virus remains inside your body on NIH.

    1. What your immune system retains a memory of is the antibodies that were created to successfully fight the infection. This means if you get infected again, your body already knows how to fight it.

  19. This is just (yet another) propaganda piece … and evidence is right there in the beginning:

    “no matter how convincing and irrefutable the science and the data about the COVID-19 vaccines are…”

    Science is never irrefutable and anyone who has worked with data knows that this is true, a fortiori, for data.

    We are a world-class research institution, and the community deserves more than just the CDC talking points. As a case in point, the article blithely repeats CDC director Walensky’s claim that “99.5 percent of all deaths from COVID-19 are in the unvaccinated”, when even a simple analysis shows that this is grossly misleading (as it most likely reaches back to before vaccines were widely available):

    https://www.linkedin.com/posts/aritrachtenberg_cdc-995-of-covid-19-deaths-are-from-unvaccinated-activity-6827587853942308864-COl7

  20. Myth or fact. people are still dying from covid even with the shot what good is it actually doing if you have a 50/50 chance you live or die with or without the shot. people are so naive to think the government will give out something free to benefit us. when diabetic medication is EXPENSIVE. make that make sense

  21. Myth number 5 appears to be incorrect, or rather new data is refuting it.
    Recent research from Israel demonstrates that natural immunity from previous Covid infection is 8 to 13 times stronger than that of a full vaccination and lasts at least 12 month in most cases, while vaccine immunity starts to wear of after 4-5 month, the study also notes that recovered + 1mRNA shot people have the strongest immunity.
    Regarding protection of the vaccinated from getting the virus, there is no conclusive evidence, as data show (in case of delta) that the spread is 50 to 90%….

  22. I am a father of 4, my wife and I both took the JNJ vax. Our children are all under 18 and unvaccinated. They are being punished at school for not being vaccinated. For example, my daughter 13 was exposed (not infected) at lunch to a student who tested positive (btw the student who tested positive was vaxed). Per school policy which follows CDC guidelines, she has to quarantine up to 10-14 days. That is 2 weeks of school. However, if she were vaccinated no quarantine at all. My kids are healthy, play lots of sports, eat well, etc and most have already had covid with run-of-the-mill 2-day flu like symptoms. I feel like there is no logic to give my kids the mRNA vaccine for health-related reasons, but the social pressure to get them vaccinated is overwhelming. Can some please explain why healthy children should get this vaccine?

  23. This article is so full of half truths and misinformation it’s too lengthy to write. All the truth about the animal studies which resulted in most of them dying, known adverse reactions, and lack of long term human trials is easily found in the internet. This technology was abandoned in 2012 for these reasons. Irrefutable. Historical fact. VAERS has recorded nearly 14k deaths in the US post vaccinations. These injections are NOT finished science and are NOT safe.

  24. With all this debate and mistrust going on, using some simple common sense should help protect you and others. Seatbelts are restrictive and uncomfortable yet they are proven to save lives.. So regardless of whether you are vaccinated or not, why not just wear a mask out in public to protect yourself and those around you? Doctors and nurses do it all the time to help reduce the possibility of contracting a disease and spreading it to others. Please… let’s all just try to be a little reasonable on this. :)

  25. Some very good comments with lots of food for thought. I’m going to agree with most commenters that this article is very much propaganda for the vaccine industry. I’m going to share my risk analysis based on real info available to all from the CDC. The link below from the CDC is all I need to use to know I don’t need a vaccination. First, I’m 46, good health, no preexisting conditions. As of May 29th, the CDC estimated that 1/3 of the US population has already had covid. (all covid cases including estimates for a-symptomatic cases) Their official tally which still shows on the page is 120.2mm. On the same page, they are estimating the total deaths to be 767,000. Divide the deaths by the cases and you will get a number of .0063, or roughly 6 tenths of a percent. Take 100% and minus this number (remember to change it to a percentage) and you get an overall survival rate of 99.37%. We know older, over 65, will have less of a chance of survival and we know under 65 will have as good or better chances of surviving on average. If you are overweight, have heart disease, diabetes, anxiety disorders, other diseases or are over 65, you should probably get the vaccination. I choose to exercise, eat right and take care of myself rather than rely on some shot. We in the US are too caught up on this whole miracle pill/shot rat race. Always looking for the easy fix. I am not against vaccines but I am totally against mandating that everyone on the planet get one. Especially when we are looking at numbers, across the board, with a higher than 99% survival rate. Keep you medicine out of my body…this goes for all the companies mandating shots. Mandate your employees run a mile every other day….they will live longer and happier lives. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/cases-updates/burden.html#anchor_1607017283798

  26. Registered Nurses can’t say anything bad about the Covid-19 vaccine or they will loose there job and never be aloud to become a Nurse again, this is proven for somebody I know was sent an email about not being aloud to say anything bad about the vaccine, if so they will track down the email from person and get them fired, and never be aloud to register as a nurse again.

    Hope you enjoy a little fact:)

    I saw the Email myself, good-luck finding this on google or even bing btw.

  27. Well this is a start I guess. I expanded my RNA knowledge here but other than that it’s still data points on how many have the shot how many don’t and some bad math. But I’ll take the knowledge and move to the next.

  28. Once again, I think we’re missing the point here. People are so busy seeking information to disprove the other side of their views. This leads to a division in our country. What we all have in common is that nobody wants to get COVID, nobody wants to die from it or watch their loved ones suffer and die. Nobody. Everybody wants to get rid of the virus and get back to “normal”. The COVID virus is a public health issue and should never have been allowed to become a political issue. That is the issue we as Americans need to be focused on, stopping COVID instead of helping it spread, get stonger, and kill. I have yet to see a valid argument or research that proves that by not wearing a mask, not getting vaccinated, gathering in large groups, not testing for the virus; this will lead to controlling the virus, stop it from spreading, stop if from developing new and stronger strains! Where is the evidence that wearing masks will increase the number of infections? Where is the evidence that a person who has not been vaccinated stands a better chance of recovery from the virus? Where is the evidence that those non-vaccinated Americans currently being admitted to hospitals have a higher survival rate than those people that have been vaccinated? Those are the facts we need to look at because that is all that matters. It’s our lives. It’s our It is the people that are not vaccinated that are over running our hospitals throught out the country. It is the people that aren’t vaccinated that are taking medical services away from heart and cancer patients, gunshot wound victims. This is a public health issue and needs .to be addressed and managed as such. COVID doesn’t care what political party you belong to or who you voted for. It is an equal opportunity killer. People are asking you to wear a mask, get vaccinated to save the lives of others, stop the spread of the virus. What is being asked of you is not putting your life in danger, nor will it kill you. Yes, it is that simple!

  29. In the section about the myth “Children do not need to be vaccinated because they do not become sick from COVID-19.” Hamer says, “[children] can serve as an ongoing source of transmission.” as a reason to get kids 12 and up vaccinated. The vaccination was not designed and does not have the ability to prevent transmission. The concept of herd immunity is laughable when considering this point. The vaccine is not meant to prevent the transmission but rather the effects of COVID on the host when someone is infected. Here is an article siting the CDC director that indicates that the vaccine doesn’t prevent transmission. https://www.stardem.com/news/national/cdc-covid-vaccines-won-t-stop-transmission-fully-vaccinated-can-still-get-spread-delta-strain/article_5f83d0cb-8b0a-535d-bbad-3f571754e5ae.html . Or here is the video of her saying it herself. http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2021/08/06/cdc_director_vaccines_no_longer_prevent_you_from_spreading_covid.html?jwsource=cl

  30. 99.5% of deaths from covid are in the unvacccinated False

    Now we know that at over 2% of deaths are in the fully vaccinated dropping that number to less than 98%.
    if you look at CDC data it was not until March 4, 2021 that even 10% were vaccinated.

    You really can’t even compare the data properly until August 4th when we had a 50/50 split in vaccinated and unvaccinated.
    So let us look at a span in that time when vaccinated and unvaccinated were pretty even in numbers that I have numbers on from CDC

    August 23-30 374 breaktrhough deaths / Total Deaths 9,612/ Breakthrough deaths =4% So now that 99.5% is really 96% Still much better than unvaccinated but not what they told us.in fact it is 7 times worse than what we were told.

  31. The spread of covid doesn’t stop because one is vaccinated. So the only life you will save is potentially is your own. So let’s stop lying about how the vaccine stops the spread and saves lives. On that note I do recommend getting vaccinated, but support the right to make your own choice on the issue.

  32. I would love to see some data to help understand the tradeoffs. Seems like all data should be in “parts per million.

    How many children 12-18 will die of covid if unvaccinated?
    How many hospitalized if vaccinated/unvaccinated?
    How many children 12-18 will get heart inflammation from the vaccine?
    Is there any long term effect of the heart inflammation?
    What is the transmission rate from a 12-18 to an adult?
    Is that transmission different if the child is vaccinated?

    Same questions for adults.

  33. See many commenters debunking this article as incorrect and full of errors. That’s the problem, nobody believes anybody as everybody lies. Lies have become part of our culture and has therefore turned scientists and experts into complete idiots that nobody will listen too.

    If we can stop the lies us and our planet may stand a chance of survival.

  34. I’m 64, and had my vaccines (“Better safe than sorry”). My 75-year-old husband refuses to get his. I guess he wants out of this marriage, and wants to leave me widowed a second time.

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