Quebecers are in a foul mood over the COVID-19 vaccine. Last week I received the fourth dose of the vaccine. I found myself in a reassuring place where the staff welcomed the citizens, few in number, with a kindness that touched me.
The Director of Public Health, Luc Boileau, has taken up his pilgrim's staff to encourage Quebecers to roll up their sleeves again. But this time, his appeal does not seem to be enough.
When questioned, citizens say without embarrassment that they are fed up and that they feel protected thanks to the vaccines they have already received. In short, they join without admitting it the cohort of antivax who are ready to applaud their refusal.
What to do then? The Minister of Health, Christian Dubé, who will no doubt return to his ministry next Thursday, knows what awaits him when his compatriots suffer the onslaught of the eighth wave. Once again, hospitals will be blocked by the influx of patients requiring intensive care.
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< p>Human beings are difficult to manage and care for. Quebecers in particular have a, shall we say, historical tendency to denial. But during two intense years of the pandemic, despite the fear that many of them felt, they let themselves be guided by the spirit of collective solidarity.
We all want this pandemic to end, but it would be irresponsible, even infantile, to believe that the trauma due to COVID-19 that we have suffered to varying degrees now allows us to play the indifferent. No one is immune to the pandemic and this situation may last for a long time.
I was flabbergasted by the reaction of an acquaintance who recently contracted COVID. He said to me: “I now believe that it does not help to be vaccinated”, because he had caught the virus. However, he had not understood all the information disseminated over the past two years. I had to explain to him that the vaccine does not protect us from the virus. Rather, it mitigates its effects. It shows how people, no matter how smart, can develop selective deafness when it comes to information they don't want to hear.
I remember an English film , a musical, which marked my mind in 1966. It was the title that shocked me: Stop the World – I Want to Get Off. You had to leave the world to become rich and famous, free from illness and disability, sang the actors.
However, with the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us want to stop this global brood. Get off this planet.
But we are confined, literally and figuratively. We have the feeling of finitude, whatever our age. Living in the moment has become our way of life.
But whether we are vaccinated or not, we perceive ourselves to be fragile. For some, this explains the docility regarding health directives, for others, refusing to use the vaccine is the only way to prove that they are alive.
COVID-19 has affected us all. , rich or poor, young and old, sent back to the tragedy of life. It's up to everyone to take it on in their own way.