Is Andrew Sullivan Right?

I booted up Twitter early this morning and saw that Andrew Sullivan (@Sullydish) was trending. My choice at the moment was to find out why, or to walk the dog. The dog won. As best as I could determine, during some TV segment or other, Mr. Sullivan said something to the effect that we need to learn to live with COVID and quit spending so much time arguing about what to do. The dog was unimpressed.

I’m calling Marquess of Twitter Rules, here, which means I get to opine without seeing the segment nor reading 99.9 percent of the comments. Moreover, this blog is mine, and I can do whatever I want.

So: Mr. Sullivan has a point, I think. Why? The angry fighting over it all—mask/not mask, vax/not vax, the whole catastrophe—isn’t accomplishing much. If governments mandate people to get vaccinated or to mask up, does that mean everyone will just say, Oh, okay, sounds good? No. Everyone just gets pissed and launches into their hardwired talking points.

As one who believes in vaccinations and masking, I’m kind of sick of carrying water for those who do not, and those who drag their feet, their knuckles, or explode in righteous outrage need to face the consequences. Already, we’re seeing airlines and hotels and bars and restaurants requiring vaccinations of both patrons and staff. The same thing should happen in grocery stores, shopping malls, and everywhere else people gather.

No vaccination? Fine. Our hours for the unvaxxed are 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Don’t want a vaccination or don’t want to wear a mask? That’s okay, but you’ll have to get your own airline. And so on.

These are sensible business decisions. I, for one, won’t take an airline that doesn’t require vaccinations and/or masks, and I won’t buy groceries at outlets who don’t take this COVID thing seriously. And as I read news reports, more and more businesses are adopting these kinds of restrictions.

My guess is schools will follow. The danger of COVID in schools appears to reflect the severity and number of cases in the greater community, and school boards will react to protect kids and teachers. Don’t want a vaccination or don’t want to wear a mask? Okay, fine. Stay home. But you’re responsible for work missed. Oh, and if you play sports, you’ll need to figure out something else.

But whatever restrictions happen, the larger point is that with so many people not getting vaccinated, COVID isn’t going away. Like any virus, it will continue to mutate as long as there are enough hosts out there, and lots of people have decided they’d prefer to be hosts. Right or wrong, that’s a fact on the ground.

That being the case, Mr. Sullivan is right. We’ll have to figure out how to live with it.

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