GOP Governor Rips Anti-Vaxx Conspiracists in Exasperated Rant: 'How Difficult Is This to Understand?'
As the Delta variant of the virus that's killed over 600 thousand Americans continues to fill hospitals and stall nationwide recovery, Republican governors are growing increasingly frustrated with the willfully unvaccinated people's bulwark against the safe return to some version of normal life.
Vaccines against the virus have repeatedly proven to be safe and effective, even against more transmissible variants like Delta. Sadly, right-wing media and even some far-right elected officials continue to sow distrust of the vaccines and any efforts to sway Americans to take them.
Like other far-right conspiracy theories, beliefs that the vaccines contain microchips or magnets or marks of beasts have leapt from the dark corners of the internet, permeating into school board meetings, private businesses, and other facets of daily life.
West Virginia's Republican Governor, Jim Justice, railed against these conspiracy theories in a recent address, visibly frustrated with the continued refusal to get vaccinated.
“For God’s sakes a livin’, how difficult is this to understand?" — Gov. Jim Justice (R-WV) is losing it over anti… https://t.co/ryQQzs7N8n— The Recount (@The Recount) 1631117202.0
"For God's sakes a livin', how difficult is this to understand? Why in the world do we have to come up with these crazy ideas? And they're crazy ideas. That the vaccine's got something in it and it's tracing people wherever they go. And the same very people that are saying that are carrying their cell phones around."
This is the latest instance of Justice's continued exasperation with willfully unvaccinated West Virginia residents. Not too far away, in deep red Alabama, Governor Kay Ivey also expressed frustration at "unvaccinated folks that are letting us down" in a testy exchange with a reporter late July.
People identified with Justice's frustration.
I might not be a big Jim Justice fan, but this is the right thing to say and the right way to say it https://t.co/74oL6n8aJA— Tom Nichols (@Tom Nichols) 1631126603.0
More of this. The vax numbers in WV aren't great because of demographics but Jim Justice keeps doing and saying all… https://t.co/h4XCOYqYm3— Tim Miller (@Tim Miller) 1631126273.0
He's right. But as they say, “It's hard to win an argument with a smart person, but it's damn near impossible to wi… https://t.co/bLiwAfXkgZ— Emily C. Singer (@Emily C. Singer) 1631126740.0
Gov. Justice has reason to be frustrated. Less than 40% of West Virginians are vaccinated against COVID, and venti… https://t.co/YpxwdxiJ9h— Frank Luntz (@Frank Luntz) 1631134078.0
My local hospital has now shut down all elective surgeries. Please, get the vaccination. https://t.co/0SKv69OwJq— Katherine Wyma, PhD (@Katherine Wyma, PhD) 1631133831.0
Others pointed out the right-wing disinformation that's hindered progress on the pandemic since the start.
Because YOUR party has been promoting these "crazy" ideas, and you know it. https://t.co/8oV1X4sUPY— Michael Vaughan (@Michael Vaughan) 1631128098.0
Republicans created a monster with their vaccine conspiracy theories, and now people are dying needlessly. And now… https://t.co/ccfT8JkExy— Paul Hogarth (@Paul Hogarth) 1631127952.0
Hopefully Justice's urgency will convince some of his constituents.