Memo to Our Leaders - My Simple Solution to the Pandemic

THE EASTSIDER - After the recent pictures of our Governor, our Mayor, and San Francisco’s Mayor maskless at the Rams/49ers game, I saw one reason people don’t use masks.

They do as they see, not as they are told to do by our flaky politicians. By the way, thanks to Magic Johnson for tweeting the pics, which you can find here. 

It got me angry enough to risk weighing in on the state of vaccination which continues to erode our lives. Most of us are thoroughly burned out by two years of semi-isolation, ‘remote learning’ for our children, and watching our communities deteriorate in front of us. 

At the same time, we know that the single biggest reason that we can’t move past the COVID Pandemic is simple - something like 30% of all Americans are against getting vaccinated.  

OK, let’s assume that that number, give or take a few percentage points, seems to be holding steady.  Personally, I don’t give a damn whether or not my fellow Americans refuse to get vaccinated.  This is, after all, America, where folks have a constitutional right to believe whatever they want to believe, whether others agree or not.  And they do so with great abandon. 

What people do not have a constitutional right to do is to compromise and potentially destroy the life of yours truly and the majority of others who follow the science and get vaccinated.  If they want to ruin my life through their intransigent belief about their rights, I would remind them that their rights stop where my rights begin.  I will respect their decision, and ask that they just stay the heck away from me and mine. 

Of course, all too many on the unvaccinated  don’t do that, do they?  And the rub is that by simply looking at an anti-vaccine believer, there is no way for you and I to know whether or not they are vaccinated.  So we suffer. I don’t really care if they get sick and die.  Their call. But it is largely their behavior that is making this pandemic linger and linger, degrading the lives of all of us, including them.  That’s not cool. 

You would think there should be a mutually acceptable resolution to this issue. 

So here’s my simple solution which preserves every ones right to vaccinate or not-vaccinate as they wish.  People who are not vaccinated should be required to wear a badge of some sort proudly stating that they are NOT VACCINATED. 

That way, we who religiously go out, get the two doses and the booster shot so that we and ours remain healthy, stay away from outside events which are risky - can choose whether or not to hang out at our own risk with those who choose to not get vaccinated. 

Of course the difficulty with this solution, people being people, is that many of the Anti Vaccine people are not above lying through their teeth when they interact with those of us who are fully vaccinated.  You know, as we do what the health professionals tell us is necessary to keep from getting sick with the virus, risking permanent health issues and/or even death. 

Sad, but there you are.  It seems fair to put people to the test of standing by their beliefs, either way. So there is a corollary to my simple solution.  If a person does not wear the badge and gets caught lying about it, they get a simple graphic visibly tattooed on their head.  It should be removable, of course, and applied at no cost by professionals. 

When and if the person decides to get vaccinated, the tattoo is removed, and they re-enter the society of the 70% or so of us who are following the medical science and keep up with vaccinations for the health of our families and friends and co-workers. 

Simple, isn’t it?   Virtually no government mandate to get vaccinated. Of course under this system anybody can rat anybody else out, and it’s simple to verify whether or not they are actually vaccinated or not.   We could even have a contest for deciding the best graphic for unvaccinated foreheads, and invite them to participate in the contest. 

I leave it to our readers as to what penalty a person should incur in the event that they get their tattoo removed even though they have not been vaccinated. 

Just sayin’ 


(Tony Butka is an Eastside community activist, who has served on a neighborhood council, has a background in government and is a contributor to CityWatch.)