Media Diary (September 2021)

Some stuff I’ve experienced lately (and not necessarily only new releases):

Scenes From a Marriage (TV): Their performances are legit mindblowing

Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings (Movie): Really enjoyed this

The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2021 Movie): Very enjoyable, and Jessica Chastain was fantastic

The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2000 Movie): This documentary (on which the movie was based) is also great

Only Murders In The Building (TV): SUPER entertaining

The Green Knight (Movie): Quite a trip

Foundation (TV): So epic!

The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain (Movie): Intense and important

American Crime Story: Impeachment (TV): Just what I needed it to be

In The Same Breath (Movie): A fascinating/horrifying look at COVID-19 as it emerged

LuLaRich (TV): Like a moth to a flame, I’ll watch any cautionary tale about MLMs

Bob Ross: Happy Accidents, Betrayal & Greed (Movie): Some drama lurking under the happy little clouds and trees

Turning Point: 9/11 and The War on Terror (TV): Appreciated the detailed backstory/building blocks that led us there

9/11: Inside The President’s War Room (Movie): Went on a bit of a 9/11 reflection binge this month

9/12 (Podcast): Interesting stories about what happened after the attacks

I Think You Should Leave With Tim Robinson (TV): You could easily make a case for this being the funniest thing on TV

Skin Deep: The Battle Over Morgellons (Movie): I’d briefly heard about this deeply strange topic, but this was super interesting

The Morning Show (TV): On board for its return

What We Do In The Shadows (TV): Continues to delight

Hesitant

Disclaimer: This post does not apply to any (currently ineligible) children under 12 or those with legitimate medical conditions who are unable to be vaccinated. They’re some of the people we’re trying to protect the most!

My wife and I have been warning about the dangers of the conservative misinformation ecosystem for a while now, and ever since the COVID vaccines became widely available I’ve been observing the ongoing antics of the anti-vax/anti-mask crowd with grim fascination.

Still, aside from posting snarky memes here and there, I hadn’t dedicated a post to my thoughts on the subject. Well, the past few weeks finally broke me. Specifically, seeing or hearing about:

  • A friend sharing a “vaccine hesitancy” video and information on trying to prevent mandates designed to stop the COVID spread (positioned as an issue of “personal choice”)

  • Stories like these

  • Deranged parents protesting classroom mask requirements (therefore going out of their way to place their own children in greater danger)

  • A local church setting up a separate viewing/listening area for those that are maskless (as if validating that as a reasonable option)

  • People taking horse de-worming medication rather than the vaccines

Enough.

I know that peer pressure can be strong, especially in conservative evangelical circles with extremely isolated media ecosystems that stir up strong “keep the government out” sentiments (except when it comes to reproductive rights, of course 💀).

Here’s the thing though: Beating COVID is going to take a united front. Contagious pandemics don’t care about your ill-informed “personal choice” arguments. People are getting sick and dying, and collective action is the only way out.

As a country, we used to be able to do this. Prior to the rise of always-on, instant misinformation sources, we banded together to defeat Polio and Smallpox. Measles, on the other hand, had a recent re-emergence due to, you guessed it, misinformation.

Even if you’re “hesistant” about getting the vaccine (there’s no reason to be) and slapping a mask on, putting your own reluctance or arguments about “personal freedom” above the lives of others is an inherently immoral act.

Just as free speech ends with your ability to yell “fire” in a crowded theater, the ability of the unvaccinated to participate in society (during a global pandemic!) should be dramatically restricted.

Shut up and wear the stupid mask. Get vaccinated to help do your part as a member of the human race. And please, please, please stop eating horse paste.