Letter: Dr. Lambeth gets it wrong
Dr. Dave Lambeth got it wrong. His recent letter to the editor claiming the county commissioners got it right completely avoids the point. What Dr. Lambeth, the county commissioners and the privileged classes of Steamboat Springs would like us to believe is that everyone in the county needs to get the vaccine in order to defeat a virus that is deadly for each and every citizen of Routt County. Nothing could be further from the truth.
The fact is, for those younger than age 70, the risk of hospitalization and death is far less than 1%. That’s especially true with a positivity rate of only 2%. For those who are over age 70, the risk has declined to 1% because of the low positivity rate and because eight out of 10 have received a vaccine. Unfortunately, this is the story that Dr. Lambeth and the Routt County board of public health do not want us to understand.
And speaking of the vaccines, this argument is not about the fact that they’re not FDA approved and only authorized through the Emergency Use Authorization act. This is not about their safety and efficacy. This is about government coercing its citizens to do something unnecessary with their bodies for their health or the health of the community.
Given such a low level of risk in our community, there is no need for government to be mandating the vaccines or masks. People who are comfortable getting a vaccine should get it. People who are comfortable wearing a mask should wear it. A good doctor would understand the importance of personal choice in these matters instead of presenting a red herring about vaccines to the community.
Freedom is not a trivial right to be glibly dismissed, especially for those who have children in public schools, businesses to run, people to employ and other health issues to consider. Routt County is ready to open up without any public health mandates. And, when someone like Dr. Lambeth says, “Trust me, I’m a doctor,” yet avoids the healthy COVID-19 statistics and trends, the people of this county have an obligation to challenge his and the Routt County public board of health’s credibility.
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