From the beginning of the pandemic that's killed more than 700 thousand Americans, Republican officials at the state and federal levels have worked to undermine basic safety guidelines and peddle deadly disinformation regarding its spread.
This continues today, and especially targets lifesaving vaccinations, which have been proven safe and effective at containing the spread of the virus..
Right-wing media and elected officials have repeatedly spread conspiracy theories designed to sow distrust in vaccines, all the while comparing vaccine mandates or any federal effort to encourage vaccinations as a federal overstep amounting to the atrocities of Nazi Germany.
Even officials who are hospitalized with the virus can't disavow the vaccine hysteria within the GOP, if comments from far-right Texas gubernatorial candidate Allen West are any indication.
In a Twitter thread, the unvaccinated West notified his followers that he and his wife were receiving monoclonal antibody infusion therapy and that his oxygen levels were low.
But he only doubled down on his opposition to vaccine mandates.
5/ I can attest that, after this experience, I am even more dedicated to fighting against vaccine mandates. Instead of enriching the pockets of Big Pharma and corrupt bureaucrats and politicians, we should be advocating the monoclonal antibody infusion therapy.
— Allen West (@AllenWest) October 10, 2021
West went on to call the shot "dangerous" and boasted that he now has natural immunity. Absurdly, he claimed that we should fight the virus with monoclonal antibody infusion therapy instead of "enriching the pockets of Big Pharma".
There's just one problem.
The "enriching the pockets of Big Pharma" argument here is particularly bizarre. For a dose of vaccine, the governm… https://t.co/paNjgtdGX6— Andrew Egger (@Andrew Egger) 1633897713.0
Who does he think creates the monoclonal antibody therapies? Antibody fairies? That treatment costs far more than t… https://t.co/3cfWMOhTZG— Dr. Tara C. Smith (@Dr. Tara C. Smith) 1633887457.0
As everyone knows, monoclonal antibody treatments are made by mom-and-pop shops that do it at cost out of love of p… https://t.co/fZLyUJjCWt— Philip Bump (@Philip Bump) 1634050250.0
Big pharma chronically underinvests in vax development because often it is much less profitable to prevent disease… https://t.co/BGmXMc461a— Colin McAuliffe (@Colin McAuliffe) 1633919938.0
@AllenWest Monoclonal antibody treatments instead of vaccines would be the absolutely best way to enrich Big Pharma.— Lazy Bot (@Lazy Bot) 1633888830.0
@AllenWest You mean the monoclonal antibody therapy that enriches the pockets of regenoron big pharma? The super e… https://t.co/DoBvkBWcSF— MakeAmericaSane....laurie 🦄💕🌊 💙🇺🇸💙 (@MakeAmericaSane....laurie 🦄💕🌊 💙🇺🇸💙) 1633877301.0
West's comments received an onslaught of backlash.
“Our bodies are our last sanctuary of liberty” said without a shred of irony to self reflection. https://t.co/smMWZC4i5L— Bhavik Lathia (@Bhavik Lathia) 1633888476.0
Republicans: Our bodies are our last sanctuary of liberty and freedom. Also Republicans: Even if you were raped, w… https://t.co/n3QMQC57CW— Miranda Yaver, PhD (@Miranda Yaver, PhD) 1633884233.0
YOU NITWIT WE HAVE SO MANY AND HAVE FOR YEARS WTF IS WRONG WITH YALL https://t.co/c45uR9bgTA— Stephen Gawking 💦 (@Stephen Gawking 💦) 1633997192.0