Poll Shows More Black People Are Willing to Get a COVID-19 Vaccination. Will You Get Yours?

Illustration for article titled Poll Shows More Black People Are Willing to Get a COVID-19 Vaccination. Will You Get Yours?
Photo: i_am_zews (Shutterstock)

I’m not an anti-vaxxer. In fact, I truly believe that most anti-vaxxers are pseudointellectual faux-spriracy theorists whose “research” ends at whichever YouTube doctor is saying the thing they’ve already decided was true before receiving any real info at all.

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That being said, I understand Black anti-vaxxers. From the infamous Tuskegee syphilis experiments to the story of Henrietta Lacks, a history of intentional medical malfeasance committed and weaponized against Black people makes us understandably wary of vaccines. There have been entire studies done on Black people and our distrust of medical practices in America.

Fortunately, there have been efforts to reach out to the Black community, ease our concerns and dispel misinformation regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. Now, a new survey shows a sharp increase in Black confidence in the safety of the vaccine and willingness to get vaccinated.

From the Associated Press:

A poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research in late March found about 24% of Black American adults say they will probably or definitely not get vaccinated. That’s down from 41% in January.

The executive director of the American Public Health Association,Dr. Georges Benjamin, says attitudes toward the vaccine among Black Americans have taken “almost a 180-degree turnaround” as outreach campaigns have sought to combat misinformation.

According to AP, the “latest number shows Black Americans leaning against getting shots is now nearly the same as white Americans at 26% and Hispanic Americans at 22%.”

Last year, The Root reported that a group of Black medical professionals released an open letter encouraging Black people to take the vaccine when it is “safe and effective.”

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We also reported that family members of Black men involved in the Tuskegee experiments also said they would get the vaccine and they encouraged other Black people to do the same.

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Even Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, encouraged Black people to get vaccinated and emphasized the fact that a Black woman was heavily involved in developing the vaccine.

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In fact, one of the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccines administered in the U.S. went to a Black critical care nurse in New York.

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Listen: I’m not trying to sound like an infomercial for the vaccine, but I have gotten mine and I do believe we are better off getting vaccinated than we are going without because we just don’t trust a healthcare system that exists in a nation of white supremacy. Again, I get it, I’m just saying this is a pandemic that affects everyone, not an experiment that specifically targets Black people.

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So I guess the only question is: Will you get yours?

Zack Linly is a poet, performer, freelance writer, blogger and grown man lover of cartoons

DISCUSSION

raineyb1013
Raineyb1013, Misfit Black Girl Island Denizen

I got the vaccine, received the 2nd dose in January so I’m starting to worry about what’s going down as it gets closer to July to be honest.

I got it because 1. I still have to go into work because my employer straight up said we can’t work from home (even though other agencies doing our work are in fact working from home) and I have a manager who’s a fucking Trumpkin who hasn’t taken this damn virus seriously AT ALL. Many of the people we serve have mentioned getting it and my manager keeps forcing people into the office. She hugs up on these people’s children and she spends way too much time yakking when she’s with them.

2. I am far too aware that Black people have been sent home by ERs who won’t treat them only to end up dead because of the COVID. So I’m hoping like hell that there’s no nasty side effects down the road because the alternative is unthinkable.

3. I didn’t want to have to be in the mass crowds given my job offers it on site. Better to take the vaccine in a way that doesn’t force me into a crowd.

All that said, my choice to take the vaccine hasn’t a damn thing to do with faith in these companies because to be real, I was going to wait until there were more people taking because I don’t want to be anyone’s damn guinea pig (at least not for free) but more to do with the vaccine is literally the lesser of two evils given the behavior in this country.

I still wear my damn mask (although I will take off the mask for the early morning walk once I’m outside) I still socially distance myself from people and I’m still limiting my outside exposure by keeping travel to the bank, the job, the supermarket, and home; that is to say I keep it to the bare necessities.