What is the COVID situation currently?
It has now been two weeks since the COVID-19 vaccines were made available to all adults in the United States, and it’s clear that the key to getting this virus under control is getting as many people as possible vaccinated.
This is certainly not a political issue. Regardless of your political beliefs at this point, it can be mutually agreed that Washington D.C. is extremely divided right now. Even then, on Wednesday night, both the President’s State of the Union address and the opposing party’s response praised the vaccines as being safe and effective.
Doctors say that the vaccines are safe. So do scientists. As do the politicians on both sides. And the eye test is says the same; millions upon millions of people have been vaccinated, and there is no evidence that the vaccines lead to death or major problems. If they had, Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines would have been paused by the FDA sometime in the past four months like the Johnson & Johnson vaccine a couple of weeks ago.
This is an important point in this pandemic. The country is rapidly approaching the point in which vaccine supply outweigh the demand. The United States has been very lucky with their vaccination rates, as compared to the nightmare currently unfolding in India and less developed countries across the globe. The problem is that there are a number of disinformation hubs on social media that want to portray the choice to get vaccinated or not as an issue in which they represent one “side” of the “issue”. In reality, they should not, because they are liars, grifters trying to take your money, clicks, and views. They should not play a part in anybody’s choice to be vaccinated or not, as they lie about aftereffects of the vaccine that have no basis in reality.
For the record, Frontstretch is not my day job whatsoever, I do not work for a company profiting off of people becoming vaccinated, and I write about whatever I want in this column within reason. I’m not receiving anything special from this website as far as making this column focused on vaccinations, and while I have been vaccinated and believe everybody should, I also respect somebody’s decision not to get one. As long as their rationale has nothing to do with said bad information con artists above.
What has been NASCAR’s response?
A number of NASCAR drivers have confirmed that they have taken the vaccine. Myatt Snider, Ryan Vargas, and Austin Cindric are among them. Maybe it’s time to check in on the leader of the garage, the defending NASCAR Cup Series champion.
Full vaccinated ✔️
— Jimmie Johnson (@JimmieJohnson) April 20, 2021
So, Chase is correct in that it is everybody’s choice to get vaccinated. The problem with this statement is that he’s acting like he and himself alone can judge himself on what is best for his health. This is a, uhh, bad take. I don’t know why I need to explain this in 2021, but here I am: please listen to doctors. Whether it’s your personal one or the doctors at the CDC.
There’s a very simple way to rephrase this statement. “I am listening to various medical personnel, both my doctor and the top-of-the-line wellness staff at Hendrick Motorsports, in order to make a personal yet informed decision as to whether or not to receive the vaccine”. That’s it. The problem with not outlining like that and instead hemming and hawwing about making a private decision alone is that it makes it seem like an issue with two equal sides, which it really is not. It’s the advice of doctors and scientists… and that’s it! This is a comment a driver makes if they support raising taxes on the top whatever percent of Americans, not if the subject is about whether to take a safe vaccine to combat a deadly virus.
It’s pretty incredible that, at this point, there really is no controversy as far as if it’s right to ban smoking from the grandstands of any sporting event. It’s harmful to the user’s health, but more importantly it’s harmful to people around the user due to the effects of secondhand smoke. Yet, then the subject turns to COVID-19, a virus that has killed a ridiculous amount of people worldwide in just a year, and suddenly a select group of people, we’ll call them “snowflakes”, get extremely and loudly offended at the idea of getting protected from the disease or the simple act of wearing a mask. As in yelling that they are being “repressed” or “segregated” for their decisions. I’m not saying that comments like Elliott’s or Steve Phelp’s “slippery slope” quote is reflective of those snowflakes, but it does embolden them not to make decisions that could potentially save their lives. Even IndyCar is taking more of a lead on this issue than NASCAR is.
Should NASCAR force personnel to become vaccinated? That’s a debate this website has already had, but if they do choose to do that, that’s their decision to make as a private company.
Who will drive for Kaulig Racing next season?
This week, Matt Kaulig revealed to Sirus XM that Kaulig Racing would move up to Cup racing next season.
— SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Ch. 90) (@SiriusXMNASCAR) April 28, 2021
It comes as no surprise, as Kaulig Racing already figured to be a Cup team next season as per Forbes. The interesting thing here is who Kaulig gets to drive the car, which should contend well judging by both the No. 16’s performance in limited starts this season and Trackhouse Racing Team’s performance as a fellow Richard Childress Racing partner organization.
It’s very unlikely that Kaulig would do a multi-driver deal. Thirty-three drivers this season have started every race, compared to 37 cars that have started every race. And of the four cars in the margin there, the only organization that doesn’t also have at least one full time driver is Live Fast Motorsports. Not having one driver every week makes it hard to sell sponsorships, as those companies want the driver to compete for a championship and potentially at least make the playoffs. The owner’s championship and playoffs receive a fraction of the coverage; nobody cared in 2015 when Kyle Busch came back in the No. 18 at least competing for an owner’s championship.
They have a good problem, because they have plenty of options. Justin Haley is going to be ready for Cup racing after this season, Kaz Grala has performed when taking over the No. 16 this year, Jeb Burton has experience and skill, AJ Allmendinger is probably the pick if he wants it. If Allmendinger doesn’t want the ride, it could be a pretty fun season watching Haley and Burton essentially compete for this promotion.
Is the new Racing Reference format a positive?
…except that comments are being removed entirely. This decision was made by NASCAR, without my input. Perhaps at some point in the future comments may be restored, at least the ability to view existing comments if not add new ones, but I am not aware of any plans to do that.
— Racing-Reference.info (@racingreference) April 28, 2021
Fix Racing Reference, guys.
About the author
Michael has watched NASCAR for 15 years and began covering the sport five years ago. He is a graduate of Salisbury University and a proud member of the National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA).
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