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On the same day that the World Health Organization slammed coronavirus booster shots as essentially selfish and immoral, President Joe Biden eagerly admitted in an interview that he and first lady Jill Biden intend to obtain booster shots ASAP.
“We’re gonna get the booster shots … We got our shots all the way back in, I think, December. So it’s past time,” the president admitted during an interview Wednesday afternoon with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos.
The interview wasn’t fully aired until Thursday’s edition of “Good Morning America.”
EXCLUSIVE: When asked by @GStephanopoulos if he and the first lady had received booster shots, Pres. Biden says: “We’re gonna get the booster shots … We got our shots all the way back in, I think, December. So it’s past time.” https://t.co/NYCZ0NgZH8 pic.twitter.com/WWuXqTdobF
— ABC News (@ABC) August 19, 2021
His admission came several hours after U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy announced that the administration is preparing to start offering coronavirus booster shots in late September.
“Today we are announcing our plan to stay ahead of this virus by being prepared to offer COVID-19 booster shots to fully vaccinated adults 18 years and older. They would be eligible for their booster shot eight months after receiving their second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna mRNA vaccines. We plan to start this program the week of September 20th, 2021,” he said.
Murthy’s announcement in turn came several hours after WHO emergency director Mike Ryan issued a scathing statement equating the administrating of coronavirus booster shots to handing “extra life jackets” to those already wearing one.
“We’re planning to hand out extra life jackets to people who already have life jackets, while we’re leaving other people to drown without a single life jacket,” he said while speaking with reporters, according to Agence France-Presse.
“The fundamental, ethical reality is we’re handing out second life jackets while leaving millions and millions of people without anything to protect them,” he added.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus reportedly echoed this sentiment.
“What is clear is that it’s critical to get first shots into arms and protect the most vulnerable before boosters are rolled out. The divide between the haves and have nots will only grow larger if manufacturers and leaders prioritise booster shots over supply to low- and middle-income countries,” he said.
“The virus is evolving and it is not in the best interests of leaders just to focus on narrow nationalistic goals when we live in an interconnected world and the virus is mutating quickly. … Vaccine injustice is a shame on all humanity and if we don’t tackle it together, we will prolong the acute stage of this pandemic for years when it could be over in a matter of months.”
If it’s selfish and immoral to obtain a coronavirus booster shot, then what is Biden given that he’s pushing ahead with handing out boosters to the U.S. population, and he himself is intent on getting one ASAP?
During a White House press conference late Wednesday afternoon, he for his part dismissed the WHO’s concerns.
“Now, I know there’s some world leaders who say America shouldn’t get a third shot until other countries got their first shot. I disagree. We can take care of America and help the world at the same time,” he dubiously claimed.
“In June and July, America administered 50 million shots here in the United States and we donated 100 million shots to other countries. That means that America has donated more vaccine to other countries than every other country in the world combined,” he added.
He didn’t allow the press the option to question him on this, choosing instead to walk away immediately after speaking.
The problem is that it isn’t just “world leaders” complaining about his decision.
“The Biden administration’s decision to start authorizing third doses of Covid-19 vaccine in September is being met with bafflement, concern, and even anger from a number of immunologists, vaccinologists, and people steeped in the normal way such decisions are made,” Stat News confirmed in a post late Wednesday.
“Many flat-out challenged the need for booster doses at this time. … And some worried that a decision had been made before the Food and Drug Administration had ruled on the need for a booster or a key vaccine advisory committee had evaluated the data — typically the way vaccine policy is set,” the outlet added.
One scientist, Johns Hopkins University vaccine researcher Anna Durbin, said the decision wasn’t based on “the science.”
“I think there’s this tidal wave building that’s based on anxiety. And I don’t think it’s based on scientific evidence that a booster is needed,” she said.
Meanwhile, University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Institute for Immunology vaccine researcher Scott Hensley echoed the WHO’s concerns.
“Anyone who thinks that vaccinating Americans with a third dose is not going to come at the expense of getting the vaccine to other places in the world — if that’s what you think, you’re just kidding yourself,” he told Stat News.
He also slammed the Biden administration for downplaying the effectiveness of the vaccine itself.
“A year and a half ago if someone told you you could have a vaccine that’s 90%, 95% effective at keeping you out of the hospital and keeping you alive, you would have jumped at that,” he said.
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