The recent rollout of COVID-19 vaccines touted as highly safe and effective has given Americans great hope for a light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, and despite the emergence of ambiguous guidance from leaders at state and local levels, at least one high-profile politician is taking a bold step toward normality.
As the Daily Caller reports, GOP Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) this week announced his intention to stop wearing a face mask in the Capitol building in light of the fact that he, his colleagues, and their aides have been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus.
According to Sen. Cruz, masks no longer serve a necessary purpose, stating, “At this point I’ve been vaccinated. Everybody in the Senate has been vaccinated.” His sentiments regarding the positive implications of vaccines have been echoed by fellow Republican Sen. Rand Paul who advised his fellow Americans, “If you’ve recovered or been vaccinated – go about your life. Eat, drink, work, open the schools.”
Cruz’s comments this week come on the heels of incident last month in which he bluntly refused a reporter’s request that he don a mask during a press conference at which he was speaking. In response, the senator explained, “Yeah, when I’m talking to the TV camera, I’m not going to wear a mask…all of us have been immunized, so…You’re welcome to step away if you’d like.”
According to guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), even those who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 should continue to wear masks and engage in social distancing, recommendations that have drawn significant criticism in recent days.
Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday blasted the suggestion that strict coronavirus precautions still need to be observed, even among the vaccinated population, stating, according to the Daily Wire, “If the vaccine is effective, why would you be wearing two masks? Like some of these folks are doing. It doesn’t make sense,” adding:
So, you know, my view is, if you get a vaccine, the vaccines are effective, you’re immune. And so act immune. If you tell people the opposite, then, gee, if it’s not effective for them and it’s not gonna change anything, then what’s the point of going through it?
Popular Fox News primetime host Tucker Carlson has also joined the chorus of those wondering why, if the vaccines are as effective as Americans have been led to believe, the government continues to urge indefinite mask wearing, social distancing, and related restrictions. Carlson opined:
At some point – no one’s asking this, but everyone should be – what is this about? If the vaccines work, why are vaccinated people still banned from living normal lives? What’s the answer to that?
So, maybe it doesn’t work, and they’re just not telling you that. You’d hate to think that, especially if you’ve gotten two shots. But what’s the other potential explanation? We can’t think of one.
Carlson’s commentary caught the attention of former first daughter Chelsea Clinton, who, according to The Hill, called on Facebook to ban the host from its social media platform for the offense of even raising the question about vaccine efficacy. The conservative pundit fired back that he remains pro-vaccine, stating, “We assumed [government regulators] had detailed showing that it does work. We still think that. The only reason we are asking the question is because the people in charge are acting like it doesn’t work.”
Indeed, given the seesaw of contradictions coming from the likes of the CDC’s Dr. Anthony Fauci throughout the COVID-19 crisis, Cruz, Paul, and Carlson are right to point out the inconsistent messaging with regard to these vaccines and press for the answers and accountability Americans deserve.