(This op-ed is written by a politically correct analyst, who will remain anonymous, but brought to you by Walter E. Block.)
I cannot in good conscience take the COVID vaccine. Why not? Because its producers are mainly toxic white males.
We wokesters want a COVID vaccine created in a more inclusive manner. Yes, yes, we will include a few token toxic white male supremacists, evil though they be, but we want laboratories that “Look Like America.” That means proportional representation by blacks, Hispanics, women, the transgendered, the queer, the bisexuals, the handicapped (both mentally and physically), young people, old people, people of color, Indigenous Americans, Asian Americans, and the vertically challenged.
But the COVID vaccines have not been created in anything approaching an inclusive manner. Unless and until this occurs, we pledge not to avail ourselves of these vaccines.
Why is this important? We the downtrodden will not feel safe until and unless the laboratories of the nation are emptied of most (not all—we are moderates, not radicals) cisgender white males. They are exploitive wherever they go; they have colonized; they have enslaved; they have exploited workers. These capitalists have ruined the economy and the environment.
The reason minorities are not proportionately represented among chemists, biologists, epidemiologists, and medical scientists is that they have all too few role models to emulate. Given our boycott, this will soon change. On that happy day, future consumers will not have to be bitterly disappointed that these occupations are non-inclusive.
Here are the details. After a pause in the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, there are two COVID vaccines currently making the rounds. They are produced by Pfizer and Moderna, respectively. Who are the people associated with the creation of these COVID vaccines?
Pfizer lists the following individuals as being involved with vaccines: Nanette Cocero, William C. Gruber, Kathrin U. Jansen, Luis Jodar, and Nicholas Kitchin. Pfizer’s immunologists are Jean Beebe, Jeremy D. Gale, and Thomas A. Wynn. Those who study and cure rare diseases include Seng H. Cheng, Katherine L. Beaverson, Michael Binks, Christian Czech, Sarah Grimwood, Greg Larosa, John Murphy, and Clark Pan. Pfizer’s medical experts are Aida Habtezion and Mace L. Rothenberg. The team studying cardiovascular and metabolic diseases is comprised of Kendra K. Bence, Morris J. Birnbaum, Albert Kim, and Bei B. Zhang.
Of these people, only Habtezion, who is from Eritrea, is African-American.
Over at Moderna the executive committee consists of Stéphane Bancel, Stephen Hoge, Juan Andres, Marcello Damiani, Tracey Franklin, Lori Henderson, Ray Jordan, Corinne Le Goff, David Meline, and Tal Zaks. Moderna’s board members are listed as follows: Noubar Afeyan, Stéphane Bancel, Stephen Berenson, Sandra Horning, Robert Langer, Elizabeth Nabel, François Nader, Paul Sagan, Elizabeth Tallett, and Henri A. Termeer. Those on the scientific advisory board include Jack Szostak, Ulrich H. von Andrian, Michael Diamond, Ron Eydelloth, Rachel Green, Paula T. Hammond, Robert Langer, Sander G. Mills, Melissa Moore, and Ralph Weissleder.
An examination of their pictures reveals that only one of them, Hammond, is black. If this is not clear evidence of racism, then nothing is.
Blacks and African Americans comprise roughly 13 percent of the population of the United States. If their representation were even 10 percent of the people involved in creating COVID-19 vaccines, I would be satisfied. Exact representation is not required. After all, the National Football League and the National Basketball Association could never be considered racist, and their black representation greatly exceeds 13 percent. But this atrocious level of underrepresentation for black Americans in the COVID vaccine initiative cries out to the heavens for social justice.
“Equity” has not been even approximately achieved.
So, our conscience dictates that we boycott Moderna and Pfizer’s products until and unless they engage in sufficient amount of skin color diversity and inclusiveness.
Walter Block is an economics professor at Loyola University and a Mises Institute senior fellow. He is author of several classic books on libertarian ethics, including Defending the Undefendable (1976), and was named one of the 100 most influential philosophers in the world by AcademicInfluence.com.