Opinion: Our best bet for a safe and fun year is getting vaccinated

Photo by Claire Keener

With Boise State reinstating certain pre-pandemic conditions, such as returning to in-person classes without a focus on social distancing, I was debating how many of these in-person classes I was willing to take. 

While states loosened restrictions and removed mask mandates, I found myself growing increasingly anxious, certain that the COVID-19 pandemic was far from over. 

Despite the looming threat of the Delta-variant, I registered to take all in-person classes this fall. Some of my anxieties were eased when Boise State sent out an email announcing that facial coverings would be required on campus once again. 

Though I had already decided to continue wearing my own mask, knowing that other students would be as well lifted a weight from my shoulders. 

[Photo of s a student getting vaccinated at the Boise State vaccine clinic.]
Photo by Claire Keener | The Arbiter

That being said, mask requirements most likely will not last forever, nor are they the best way to keep us protected alone. Because of this, it is imperative to the health and well-being of the Boise State community that everyone who is eligible gets vaccinated.

Getting vaccinated is the best way for the students, faculty and staff at Boise State to stay healthy throughout the next semester. Wearing masks in public in-door spaces even after being fully vaccinated is also strongly recommended by the CDC.

Less people on campus and in the community will catch and/or spread the virus. The more people that get vaccinated, the quicker we can hopefully get back to a new normal. 

Of course, this is a personal choice for everyone. There are many reasons people choose not to get vaccinated. 

Many people are concerned about how quickly the vaccines were developed. However, according to the CDC, the vaccines have and will continue to go through “the most intensive safety monitoring in U.S. history.” 

The vaccines have gone through a multitude of clinical trials, tests and studies in order to  ensure their safety and make them available to anyone 12 years and older. Because of this, people can be reassured that the vaccines are safe

The vaccines have also proven to be efficient in reducing the risk of catching and spreading the virus. While it is possible to contract COVID-19 after being fully vaccinated, the chances of severe illness, symptoms and death are greatly reduced

It is also important to recognize that any side effects of the COVID-19 vaccination pale in comparison to the symptoms of contracting the actual virus while unvaccinated. 

Symptoms of the COVID-19 virus include fever, cough, trouble breathing and chest pain. Some symptoms can last weeks after contracting the virus.

In comparison, some side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine include tiredness, muscle ache and injection site soreness.

According to the CDC, “COVID-19 is still a threat to people who are unvaccinated. Some people who get COVID-19 can become severely ill, which could result in hospitalization, and some people have ongoing health problems several weeks or even longer after getting infected.” 

There is also a common misconception that the COVID-19 virus is not a threat. 

Some people don’t think they will get the virus, or that they won’t have a severe case if they do contract COVID-19. Younger individuals fall outside of the most vulnerable to COVID-19 They’re young and healthy, so their symptoms will be bearable. However, this is not the case. Anyone can become severely ill after contracting COVID-19, no matter your age. 

All of the Boise State community should strongly consider getting the vaccine. It’s pertinent to not only your own safety, but the safety of your loved ones and everyone around you.

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