Updated: May 28
On Thursday, May 13, the COVID-19 vaccine became available for people from ages 12-15. As of that Sunday, only 6.2% of people in that age group in LA had gotten the vaccine. In my opinion, this number is disappointingly low. Why aren't as many people getting the vaccine? Today I'm going to go through some arguments against getting the vaccine and see if they have any facts to back them up.
Many people say that they don't know what the long-term effects are, as the vaccine is new. The problem with this is that experts say any long-term effects would occur within six weeks after receiving the vaccine, and the vaccines were tested and studied for two months before becoming available to the public. If there were any long-term effects, they would have been observed during this time.
Some say that it doesn't fully prevent you from getting the virus.This is technically true, but it still greatly lowers your chances of contracting the virus, and if you do get it afterwards, the effects will be much more mellow than if you haven't gotten the vaccine. Having your arm hurt for a few days is a fair price to pay to massively lower your probability of contracting the virus.
Another argument is that If you've already had COVID before, you don't need to get the vaccine. Having had the virus does build a temporary immunity, but it goes away after some time. The vaccination will last permanently.
Unfortunately, experts now think that herd immunity in the US is probably not going to happen. It's completely possible, but just unlikely because not enough people are getting it. While thinking "if we aren't going to get there anyway, why should I get vaccinated?" seems like a reasonable thought at first, there are a few reasons that it doesn't really make sense. First, there is a chance we could get there, so by getting vaccinated, you make the country a tiny bit closer. But even if we don't reach the threshold, getting the vaccine will still help you not get the virus. The more people who are vaccinated, the rarer the virus will be.
The only reason I could see not getting any vaccine (COVID or otherwise) is if it's not easily accessible to you, but the COVID vaccine is very accessible here in the US. It's completely free, and should be available at your local pharmacy, so you won't have to drive too far. Some places are even giving things out to people who get the vaccine, the most well-known example being Ohio giving out lottery tickets. I only got a 10% off Vons coupon, but I guess it's better than nothing.
If you haven't gotten the vaccine yet, hopefully this article gave you some more information so you can decide if you want to get it or not. If you want to learn more, all of the links in this article have a lot of good information.