The vaccine is here! (Fireworks! Applause! Confetti!) But is it? I applaud Florida for vaccinating the over 65 crowd first but not the manner in which it’s done. How many Boomers-plus can actually understand the different hospital websites? How many get up at 6 am to be first in line to “book a jab.” (That’s British for ‘get the vaccine’.) Then, once you have an appointment, there is the two to five hour wait without chairs and six feet apart? (And no toilets.) Most importantly, why is it only seniors in the highest wealth zip codes, that are getting vaccinated? (Key Biscayne, Fisher Island, Pinecrest and Deering Bay, are listed in those codes.) What happened to Hialeah, Opa-locka, Homestead and Perrine? Do Black and Brown seniors’ lives matter? Only if they’re in a nursing home.
My life matters, but no more than the middle class or below-middle class “sweet little old person” who has raised children and most likely grandchildren. Many of the Black and Brown population are elderly, but without cell phones, computers and cars. Why aren’t we going to them in vaccination vans? This is not a new idea, mammograms and other tests are offered from vans. Science has shown us that the poorer you are the more likely you are to contract COVID. Why aren’t the poorer elderly first in line?
Why were the Miami-Dade County Commissioners given 1300 vaccines each to “use as they wish.” How is that fair? Their lives and those of their donors and friends matter more? (Surprisingly, none said ‘no thanks’!) I voted for Raquel Regalado, Key Biscayne’s commissioner, to administer the laws and create policy for our county – not to play God and decide who gets immunized for COVID 19.
I understand that each and every one of us wants to live and we’ll do all in our power to do so in the face of this virus. What I don’t understand is how our governmental entities can be so disparate in the distribution of what some perceive to be, a life-saving vaccine. All seniors should be given access to the vaccine – not just the wealthy. After that, can we please give it to our teachers, police, fire and trash workers? They are the most essential of our essential workers. Further, many of them live in those “middle class neighborhoods.” (Our military is also extremely essential, but the Commander in Chief makes that decision.) The professors, staff and their “family members” of our universities can wait. The children of the county have to be educated and kept out of harm’s way before they are ready for university.
The best news of all, I’m not worried about our fabulous Boomers, Silent Generation and Greatest Generation… they take it stoically! Most survive – in spite of the policy and its implementation.