MSNBC's Joe Scarborough blasted anti-vaxxers for distorting the debate over life-saving shots with lies and misinformation.
Vaccination rates show a clear partisan divide, and now the highly contagious delta variant of the coronavirus has exploded in states won by Donald Trump -- and the "Morning Joe" host ripped the bad actors who prolonged the pandemic and placed younger children and others at risk from the deadly disease.
"You hear people talking about vaccine mandates as if -- again we had the Nazi analogy, every other crazy analogy, they're going to take away our Bibles," Scarborough said. "I'm curious of the 300 or so million Americans who got five or six vaccines before they went to kindergarten, did their parents have to trade in their Bibles before their vaccines, did they have to trade in Bibles when they were required, if they wanted to get a public education, to get vaccine for the mumps for polio, for diphtheria -- I can name, five, six, seven."
"You could have called them vaccine mandates, whatever you wanted to call it," he added. "It was a requirement -- show your papers. If you didn't get the vaccine, you don't get an education in the United States of America, except in extraordinary circumstances. So why can't we tell public schoolteachers, if you want to teach this fall, you have to get a vaccine? Why don't we tell frontline workers, health care workers, just a shocking number, 40 [percent] to 50 percent of health care workers, working with senior citizens right now in nursing homes, aren't vaccinated. Why don't we tell them you have to get a vaccination, this is a public health epidemic, pandemic, or you can't work? Why don't we tell our public safety officers the same thing? This would be no more radical than what we've been doing for 60 years."
However, he said, there's a crucial difference between public health campaigns in the past and the push against coronavirus.
"Whether it's Facebook, if you want to blame Donald Trump, whoever, whoever, you know, we want to blame for this, people are acting like this has never happened before," Scarborough said. "Something about these times when it comes to public health, have made smart people dumb and dumb people insane. So why don't we have those mandates?"
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