Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Friday January 7, 2022
We are playing whack-a-mole with variants – and the virus is winning
As we begin year three of the Covid-19 pandemic, hunkering down again to survive the viral blizzard that Omicron has brought, it is painfully clear that we are failing to learn from the past.
Predictably, rich nations have made boosters and border controls their primary response to the Omicron crisis, while vaccine apartheid, the 800-pound gorilla in the room, is completely unaddressed. If we do not vaccinate the world, the pandemic won’t end, more variants will emerge, and the world will continue to lose millions of lives, along with trillions in economic losses.
While some political leaders might claim that they “didn’t see Omicron coming,” health experts have been shouting from the rooftops about this. For months.
In April 2021, as the delta variant devastated India, causing millions of excess deaths, we had this warning in the Washington Post: “We cannot just vaccinate rich countries and hope that we will be safe. The only way to end this pandemic is to end it everywhere. Otherwise, we will forever play whack-a-mole with a constantly mutating virus.”