Cole Beasley, wide receiver with the Buffalo Bills, caused a stir on Friday when he shared a statement on Twitter in which he asserted that he would not be getting the covid vaccine. “Hi, I’m Cole Beasley and I’m not vaccinated!,” he wrote. “I will be outside doing what I do. I’ll be out in the public. If your scared of me then steer clear, or get vaccinated. Point. Blank. Period. I may die of covid, but I’d rather die actually living.”
Beasley’s stance contradicts the nfl’s current pre-season protocol regarding unvaccinated players, meaning his ability to participate in future organized team activities will likely be affected—but he even claimed that he would rather retire early than be moved on this issue.
“I’m not going to take meds for a leg that isn’t broken,” he continued. “I’d rather take my chances with covid and build up my immunity that way. Eat better. Drink water. Exercise and do what I think is necessary to be a healthy individual. That is MY CHOICE based on MY experiences and what I think is best… If I’m forced into retirement, so be it.”
In a new video on his YouTube channel, pulmonary medicine specialist Dr. Mike Hansen (who has spent the last year creating content dispelling misinformation surrounding the pandemic and the vaccine) gave his professional opinion on Beasley’s statement. “There’s a difference between preventative medicine and therapeutic medicine, or treatment,” he said, pointing out the flaws in Beasley’s “broken leg” analogy. “That’s what this vaccine is all about; preventing the bad outcome from happening in the first place.”
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“There’s really only one valid medical reason why someone shouldn’t get the vaccine,” he added. “If someone has a severe allergy history when it comes to getting a vaccine, that could be a legit medical reason.”
While Beasley has made a personal choice, Hansen explains that when it comes to the vaccine, the decisions we make about our own health affect outcomes for others.
“What’s going to happen is you’re going to have other variants of the coronavirus, like the Delta variant which originated in India and is all across the globe and is in the United States,” he said. “Not only does it spread easier, it’s thought to be more infectious, more dangerous. Over time that has the potential to overcome those who are vaccinated. It could be that the vaccines work for a little while, but because we don’t reach that herd immunity, that virus never goes away. The other aspect of not getting herd immunity is, those who can’t get the vaccine, like children, then you’re making them more prone to the virus.”
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