By Samuel Strait, Reporter at Large – March 14, 2021

As I was wading through the process of doing my taxes for the year, yes,
I still do them not a tax preparer, I had Sunday’s CBS station tuned to
college basketball and before I knew it the game had ended and “Sixty
Minutes” was being aired.  Ordinarily, CBS is hardly very informative or
interesting and it would normally be met with the “Off” button.  As I
prepared to depress the button, “Sixty Minutes” came on with their
projected line up and the first item was about the “new” variants of
Covid-19.  I thought , okay I’ll bite, what about them?  It seems that
some portion of the medical research community is all agog over several
new variants of the Corona Virus.  Naturally the news wasn’t
particularly good, after all the pandemic must go on.

It appears that in rare cases, “mistakes” are being made in certain
instances when the virus replicates itself and a new variant is formed. 
While the white board display was relatively useless in the interview,
the researcher was pointing to several colorful points on the display
indicating they were three new variants that appeared to be much more
deadly and easily transmitted.  The three variants, one from the UK,
South Africa, and Brazil, were said to be already appearing on the east
coast of the United States, as well as another variants brewed on the
east coast itself.  Since data on the variants was admittedly sparse at
this time it was supposed to be understood that all this research was
preliminary.  The bottom line was that it is unknown at this time
whether or not the current vaccines would effectively work on the new
variants, and it was possible that the vaccine mills would have to go
back to work.

Thus far it is reported that the Moderna vaccine appears to work on the
Brazilian variant, and the Phizer vaccine seems to keep both the UK and
South African variant in check.  Still there are alarming reports of
serious health issues stemming from inoculation of both vaccines. 
Unfortunately, while the virus continues to circulate in the population
the researcher cautioned that other variants are likely to emerge where
new vaccines will likely be required and mask and social distancing
remain essential.  Since there were no real questions regarding those
cautions, it would have been interesting to have gotten their take on
what actual benefit these precautions have on prevention.

We have been told that the reason both the Common Cold and the Common
Flu have nearly been eradicated in the past year was because of these
measures, yet it hasn’t had the same effect on Covid.  Why is that? 
Granted, not having to deal with both common viruses that have plagued
mankind for hundreds of years should be considered a benefit, but still
what makes Covid-19 impervious to all the safety measures that have
taken place over the past year? The Media, Public Officials, and the
Health Community can’t have it both ways, either masking, social
distancing, and washing ones hands works for some viruses, but not the
one these measures have been mandated to “crush this particular virus”.

At the end of the day it is pretty clear that there is much more to be
learned about viruses that plague the world.  What is unfortunate is
that vaccines may reduce the effect of the virus, but they are not a
cure.  The question now should become, “Is what we are doing now really
all that beneficial in the over all scheme of things?”  And, “Are they
really all that necessary if we are going to have to continually chase
after new variants, with new vaccines, when the vast majority of the
population suffers in a such limited fashion when infected?”

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