COVID-19 has set the world in a continuous state of crisis. It continues its stretch worldwide with new strains that revitalize the fight against the dangerous virus. Despite the tide slowly turning, the dangers and contagiousness of COVID-19 cannot be underestimated. Thus, one of the first universal and global goals was to create a vaccine that would stop the spread of the disease. Yet after a full year of fighting the global pandemic, some begin to question the vaccine’s necessity and even oppose its implementation due to potential risks and side effects. Yet despite some questioning the usefulness and safety of COVID-19, mass vaccination is still an efficient, crucial, and even necessary way to stop the spread of the virus.
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Novel strains pose a threat as people who were once sick can get ill once again (“Frequently asked questions about COVID-19 vaccination”. 2021). They pose a massive risk to the community and, therefore, should be prevented from spreading and mutating further. It is a challenging task to stop the virus from multiplying in huge numbers. The larger the number of sick people, the more likely it is that the virus will evolve further and develop a new strain. Therefore, vaccination does not only stop the virus from affecting more people but also evolving into more dangerous variants. Vaccination would curb the number of people able to get sick, therefore, greatly reducing the danger COVID-19 presents.
Counterarguments to COVID-19 Vaccination
A rising number of people oppose mass vaccination, and their reasons may vary from person to person. While many people change their minds after getting sick, some continue to hold the same beliefs they had before the sickness. For people who have never gotten ill and have no relatives, friends, or co-workers who dealt with the illness, vaccination might also seem unnecessary or fears overblown. There are two primary reasons people offer to explain their refusal to get vaccinated, excluding those who simply reject the idea that the virus exists: belief in the lack of necessity and fear of side effects.
Some people refuse to get vaccinated due to the belief it is unnecessary. They believe that at the current moment, with a large portion of the population having experienced the illness, vaccination is no longer required. Either the medical professionals have already discovered reliable ways to treat the sickness, or the chance of getting sick is low (Saxena, 2021). They might point out how controlled the situation has become since the beginning of the pandemic. Sometimes this position is born out of disbelief in the vaccine’s efficiency, as the virus keeps evolving while the vaccines are modeled to fight the previous strains (Dodd et al., 2021).
Additionally, many people refuse to get vaccinated due to the potential side effects. People fear for their and their children’s lives as the current data on the vaccination’s side effects and adverse effects are relatively limited (Saxena et al., 2021). The COVID-19 vaccines have a short creation cycle due to recency.
Typically, developing a vaccine can take fifteen to twenty years, including research, test trials, public trials, and adjustments (Rappuoli et al., 2019). Due to the severity of the pandemic, the COVID-19 vaccine has not spent nearly as much time in the laboratories, barely reaching a year in terms of development and production. Thus, many side effects are being discovered as mass vaccination enrolls further.
The fact that there are over 200 various versions of the COVID-19 vaccines developed in different countries by different companies leaves many people wary of their effectiveness. Their fears are often made worse, with the media outlets highlighting the adverse outcomes and ignoring the positive numbers. When news about numerous cases of sickness, disability, and even death after people get vaccinated, it is a small wonder why some may decide to completely abstain from the vaccination (Dodd et al., 2021). It also explains why even those who fully understand the virus’s danger may feel cautious about vaccination.
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Looking at the reasons behind refusals makes it clear there is a common thread: lack of faith in the vaccine. Whether people acknowledge the necessity of vaccination or think it will become naturally obsolete, both sides acknowledge that the current data is somewhat lacking. For pre-existing medical conditions, there is sometimes simply no data available about potential side effects (“Frequently asked questions about COVID-19 vaccination”. 2021). For healthy adults, adverse side effects are often mild, but they can get severe in rare cases. These factors make people understandably wary, but it should not stop people from being vaccinated altogether but rather encourage full transparency of vaccination development.
As mentioned before, healthy people rarely experience negative side effects, and it arguably becomes their responsibility to get vaccinated to stop the virus, so people who cannot get vaccinated are better protected through herd immunity. Believing that the disease is easily curable does not hold when exposed to the data. While the public health services are adapting to the pandemic, they are overwhelmed and outnumbered compared to the number of patients. Ensuring that a vast number of people get vaccinated and become immune or resistant to the illness will allow them to be more focused and not spread thin.
Additionally, the myth is self-destructive in its effect because the more people refuse to become vaccinated, the less effective herd immunity becomes. It is impossible to rely on the majority being immune to the virus when so many refuse to get vaccinated and contribute to new strains. This is why it is essential to confront the growing number of people refusing to get vaccinated with factual data to challenge the myths. As vaccine development continues, ensuring the transparency and safety of the process as mass vaccination is also necessary.
Despite the existing risks and rare opposition, mass vaccination continues to be an essential step toward stopping the virus from impacting the world. It can slow the disease’s growth and help nations have a firmer grasp of the crisis. Although some people insist that vaccination should not be necessary and others fear potential side effects, people should not discredit mass vaccination. The answer should be providing the public with better transparency about the process and ensuring that vaccines are safe and easy to access through medical tests. Mass vaccination is a necessary tool in stopping the pandemic spread of any virus, and COVID-19 is no exception.
Dodd, R. H., Pickles, K., Nickel, B., Cvejic, E., Ayre, J., Batcup, C., Bonner, C., Copp, T., Cornell, S., Dakin, T., Isautier, J., & McCaffery, K. J. (2021). Concerns and motivations about COVID-19 vaccination. The Lancet. Infectious diseases, 21(2), 161–163. Web.
Frequently asked questions about COVID-19 vaccination. (2021). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Web.
Rappuoli, R., Black, S., & Bloom, D. E. (2019). Vaccines and global health: In search of a sustainable model for vaccine development and delivery. Science Translational Medicine, 11(497). Web.
Saxena, S., Skirrow, H., & Wighton, K. (2021). Should the UK vaccinate children and adolescents against COVID-19? BMJ, 374(8302). 196-197. Web.
What have you learned about how to present a strong argument? How could/will you apply this knowledge in your professional or everyday life (3-4 sentences)? Sophia says: Think about the specific skills and techniques that you used while developing and writing your essay. What tools will you take with you from this experience?
The course taught me the importance of presenting the opposing view, considering it, and countering it with well-researched, educated arguments. Even in everyday life, it is essential to be aware of other opinions and options to form a strong position in any subject. Using parallelism and comparison in a discussion to highlight the differences between different beliefs can be very useful to figure out how they compare.
Consider the English Composition I course as a whole. What have you learned about yourself as a writer (5-6 sentences)? Sophia says: What did you learn that surprised you? Is there anything that you have struggled with in the past that you now feel more confident about?
The course was good practice for my writing skills and realizing where they might be lacking. I learned how difficult it could be to form a complex dissection of an opposing view without going into too many details. Finding sound sources can be rather challenging because it might be tempting to go for the first source available. It is better to pick several sources and then choose which ones are more suitable for the work. Overall, I feel more confident about my writing skills and my ability to write argumentative essays.