Friday, January 28, 2022

I am writing in response to last week’s New in the Neighborhood column. It was titled, “I Don’t Understand” (August 19, 2021). I am hoping to bring a little clarity to the issues brought up.

(Side note: I particularly enjoy this column and look forward to reading it every week because Mrs. Glick often “dares” to go where other people would not. Kudos.)

I was very saddened to be referred to as an “idiot.” I consider myself to be a very well-read, educated individual. And, even if I was not, I would still hope to not be called an idiot by a fellow Jew.

Here is why I will not take the vaccine. And no, it has nothing to do with my selfish ways:

I have had COVID. Way back in March of last year, my entire family and I had it. In fact, my husband was one of those terrible cases that if not for the 24/7 care from Dr. Joey Shatzkes (and input from Dr. Doron Katz) could have ended very differently. Hashem makes our bodies amazing! We have antibodies! Lots of antibodies! Antibodies that CONTINUE to prove on the daily that we are protected.

I can’t possibly find ANY justification in the entire world as to why I need to take the vaccine…to “follow rules,” to make someone rich? To make someone feel emotionally safe?

I have chosen to live in this wonderful country because we are FREE! Free to choose, to have rights and liberties. I am not an idiot because I don’t “adhere to all of the rules of the past year.” I am an American.

Regarding those who have not had COVID: Perhaps the many years of being trained to wait for FDA approval for things, or perhaps the Jewish way of checking and rechecking (and further checking!) if something is in fact kosher has led some to be wary of being part of the learning curve…

I am hoping this has been helpful in bringing about a little clarity. I am also hoping as Jews we can go into the New Year with love in our hearts and acceptance for everyone’s personal medical choices.

Valerie S. Mirwis
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