As usual, Dr. Strang’s statement is dripping with propaganda. Thanking people for answering the call to get vaccinated and doing what it takes to protect their loved ones. In so doing, according to Strang, we might be able to reach population immunity by early September. Just one issue with that: vaccination is not the only way to reach population immunity (AKA herd immunity). According to the CDC glossary of terms immunity can be either passive or active. Active immunity is described as a permanent immune response achieved by either contracting a virus or through immunization. Passive immunity is limited and most commonly seen in the antibodies a mother passes to the child prior to birth. On June 9, 2020 the WHO described herd immunity as “Herd immunity is the indirect protection from an infectious disease that happens when a population is immune either through vaccination or immunity developed through previous infection. This means that even people who haven’t been infected, or in whom an infection hasn’t triggered an immune response, they are protected because people around them who are immune can act as buffers between them and an infected person. The threshold for establishing herd immunity for COVID-19 is not yet clear.” However, the description changed in December 2020 to include the new term of population immunity and describe how vaccines work and why they are the better option for reaching immunity.
A quick point of fact: the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are NOT been approved by the FDA. They have been approved for emergency use. This is evidenced by the never ending changes to: recommended length of time between doses, mixing and matching of MRNA vaccines, pulling vaccines, age of people eligible for vaccines, current studies on use of covid vaccines on pregnant and nursing mothers, and on and on we go.
Strang says the finish line is in sight and we all need to contribute. But what finish line is he looking at? Is it zero cases? Zero deaths? Or is he eluding to sperate restriction levels for those who are vaccinated and those who are not? Well shortly after this he did say that once we reach our goal of 85% population immunity (85% vaccinated) we can start (1)our new normal. That strikes me as an odd statement. What exactly does a new normal look like and why should we agree to it? It means there will be different rules for those who have been vaccinated and those who have not. And if you choose not to agree to this new social policy, well you likely won’t be allowed to partake in society. They’re bordering on medical coercion at this point (2).
Another question that really needs to be addressed is: who is our Premier? Dr. Strang gets the vast majority of questions from reporters even though he seldom knows the answers to them. Commonly saying things like “When I hear the NACI recommendation” or “I don’t have that information at the moment”. This is especially prevalent in regards to break through cases. He has been asked by one reporter multiple times for info on the vaccination status of covid related hospitalizations and deaths. He has yet to give an answer on this instead opting to explain how break through cases are to be expected(3). His lack of specific detail and the reality that he is an appointed official is concerning. Strang is essentially running the Province and his sole duty is Public Health. Not economics, not psychology, not legal, just public health. At best he consults with officials of other sectors but even then he doesn’t always take their recommendations. We saw this when he closed in-person learning in all schools only hours after the Provincial Pediatric Advisory Committee stated it was more beneficial to keep schools open. In the Provincial briefings he has repeatedly disagreed with the national recommendation of 75% vaccination rate. Stating it should be 85% and that will be Nova Scotia’s target(4). But here is an article from 2012 explaining how vaccination rates are calculated into overall herd immunity thresholds, and that this will be different in different population groups. So it appears as though Strang on one hand does what he’s told from the federal level, NACI in particular. However, on the other hand he seems to assert his appointed authority in direct contradiction of expert advice or established scientific knowledge.
Now on to Rankin. He once again presented as a cold, distant, and un-relatable leader. A growing number of Nova Scotians have been claiming that he has blocked them on his social media platforms. So far all complaints have been with those who disagree with him. This in turn makes it harder to believe his compassion for small businesses in relation to his forcing them to close in-person services. He states in the briefing that small businesses are happy with the promise of another grant, however multiple shop owners have stated otherwise. Those can be found here.
One last note, vaccine passports. (5) no mention of ethical issues against those who choose not to be vaccinated, just for those who have not yet had the opportunity to be vaccinated. This makes the earlier announcement of drive-thru vaccine clinics and home-call vaccinations much clearer.
I’m not concerned about forced vaccinations – I identify as trans-vax so I should be good.
See the clips for yourself: