Vaccine Success, Media Misery: Is Good News Taboo in the Trump Age?
Even in a moment of national triumph, Americans are a fellowship of the miserable, stuck in a bitter blame war. Why the "pandemic of the unvaccinated" proves it's time to end the jihad
Last week’s headline above a New York Times column by Ezra Klein read:
What if the Unvaccinated Can’t Be Persuaded?
I hate that I believe the sentence I’m about to write. It undermines much of what I spend my life trying to do. But there is nothing more overrated in politics — and perhaps in life — than the power of persuasion.
It is nearly impossible to convince people of what they don’t want to believe.
The column followed a predictable path: tales of the unvaccinated writhing on deathbeds as they repented too late, reminders about the positive history of vaccine mandates, and a somber conclusion: “I urge those who object to vaccination passports as an unprecedented stricture on liberty to widen their tragic imagination.”
Even though I ostensibly persuade people for a living, I no longer believe persuasion works. Here, have some authoritarian solutions was the basic gist. Whatever happened to Yes We Can? “Nothing to fear but fear itself”? “When the going gets weird, the weird tu…