We had COVID beat. Or did we?

Tommy Hazleton
12 min readJul 27, 2021


THE BIGGER LIE is the real danger to our Freedom. So, what can be done?

Welcome to the 4th wave. Welcome to the post-pandemic pandemic. Welcome to the victory lap where we spin out and crash into the crowd in a big ball of fire. You’ve been here all along; it just took a bit for Covid to find those gaping holes in the shield that we were building around America and exploit them with The Delta. If anything, maybe that first taste of normalcy and true freedom will motivate us to do everything we can to make sure it wasn’t just a taste. Or else. So, what can be done?

Full disclosure: I got my Covid vaccine much earlier (3/11) than I anticipated and I did so with a twinge of guilt. What if someone else needed it more? I caught wind there might be a few extra doses left by the end of the day at the clinic in our area, and I sat there the entire time fully expecting to be turned away. When I got that clipboard I couldn’t believe it. Spent days not believing it. Still, it’s kinda hard to believe.

I am a Dad to two teenage boys. A husband. A brother. A son. No matter how you look at it, I have responsibilities that are beyond just myself. I am 47 years old, and for much of 2020, it sure seemed to me like the news media really loved to show a guy who I could have gone to high school with who had met his match with Covid-19. He would leave behind his family to a sad go-fund-me page that wasn’t going to come close to helping his family deal with the visceral loneliness and misery that gripped the whole world. I’m not that kind of Dad. Not if I can help it.

I didn’t want to leave my family to denial, mourning, pain — like nothing else. When acceptance, healing, comfort, a shoulder to cry on, a body to hug were nowhere to be found. No such thing as a good funeral in 2020, but Covid sure had the recipe for bringing hell to the church and hate to the graveyard; with or without a mask. Your choice.

But then, the light at the end of the tunnel. Some wonderful service member jabbed a tiny little piece of imposter Covid into my arm. Time passed. Got the second shot. Wasn’t the best day after, but 24 hours later I felt good and life started to improve. It was a light shining ahead of this very dark tunnel that we all just went through. Every day I drove by and saw those lines at the vaccination centers I felt hope and a camaraderie with my fellow Americans for putting themselves at risk with a brand new vaccine in an effort to save lives and return us back to normal.

It felt great to see so many others taking one for the team as each vaccination offered a promise of renewed livelihood to both our nation, and eventaully the entire world. With our hindsight we all now knew what True Freedom was, and that was never more evident when we all began to feel what that was like after the great vanishing thereof back in 2020. You don’t know what you’ve got until you’ve lost it and gotten it back.

And there we were. It was back! We went out a few times. A few more.I Had a date with my wife. Our youngest son is 12, so not long thereafter, we had them at the ready and the minute they were able to get the first shot, we had an appointment scheduled. Relief!

Neighbors came by. We went to the movies. We went out to eat. Hell, I even starred in a musical and most of us were eventually allowed to perform without a mask. Amazing what that does to the sound of song coming from a soulful human being who is finally allowed to perform and connect with all those who enjoy such connections. It had been a while for those on the stage and those who enjoy a good performance. The energy was fantastic. We all got a taste of what life was like before and it tasted spectacular.

My Mom flew to visit. We went on Vacation. We had a Jaws on the water party at our pool for July 4th. It was so much fun. Who the hell were we? We were living again! We had made it. Against all odds, we were going to win this war! Finally.

Make no mistake about it, what I had, many of us had, in those glorious moments after our vaccines was FREEDOM. It was a freedom like most of us have never experienced, and like Freedom tends to be, it was liberating. It felt wonderful. The mask came off, I lived without fear, eventually I was safe. Then my family was safe.

Until we weren’t. Which given the status quo and every single thing we knew about Covid, and too many of our fellow citizens, we were never really going to win. “We are all in this together.” Turns out, that’s a big problem, rightly, for “all of us.” And the irony that this “freedom to choose” the vaccine has now lead to us all, once again, headed towards enslavement from Covid-19. It’s just too much and fixing it is once again beginning to consume me and the rest of the country, and we aren’t going to stop beating this horse until it is beaten. Now we see, there can be no freedom as long as Covid-19 is allowed to live on and thrive.

Fortunately, and unfortunately, there is a giant pyramid of ridiculously obvious reasons why we are where we are. And there should (must!) be accountability. We must not only heed these reasons why, we most also discuss them, and aim to change them, for there are lives at stake this time. Not the lives that couldn’t be saved from a novel virus for which we had no immunity. Nope, this time it is lives that need not be lost. Lives that should not be lost. Lives that can be saved by that simple yet supernal and magnificent biological weapon known as immunity. That God-gifted science that we understand and have harnessed to save lives throughout the entirety of the time since we began cracking the codes of so many horrible diseases that would continue to wreak havoc on humanity if it weren’t for our brilliant minds and our unquenchable quest for knowledge and understanding of science. The willingness of everyone to get the vaccine is the most likley and only solution to the Covid-19 virus for years, if not forever.

Yet our fellow Americans are turning away from it, apparently in droves.

It is a mess that bleeds daily before us. Has bled. Social media has opened a tap into the vein of this country and it’s now draining out the blood of senseless lives lost through an infection of misinformation that is malignant. That seemingly nobody can stop. So where do we start?

Well, knowing what we know now, we can point our finger at the Republican Manslaughter Project. Combined with FOX NEWS and the lesser bottom feeders that suck on the teat of the paranoia that infects those who are most fearful of fake news (by infecting them with exactly that which they are so fearful of), The Republican Manslaughter Representatives have more blood on their hands than any group of citizens, media conglomerate, or political party, in memory.

Tough to blame China now when we had the virus beat, only to let it come back around to send us backwards. But we must blame someone. And they are out there, about to lead our way back into the dark of another hellish stretch of illness, misery, lost opportunity, and death. And you better believe they ain’t pointing fingers back at themselves, when we all know they should be. Well, everyone except them. Even the governor of Alabama weighed in and she is 100% correct. And finally, a politician who gets it right!

All those “Conservatives” — first ignoring the situation, then pretending it didn’t exist, then crying that it was a big scam; all while barking for businesses to stay open, refusing to wear a mask, and bemoaning socialism as they cashed their stimulus checks. I am not a party guy. I have a pretty good disdain for two-party politics as it is. I mean, look where we are. But still, the Republican’s have all but a monopoly on doing every single thing wrong when it comes to Covid-19.

If we look at this on the surface and to the hellish depths below, this is THE BIGGER LIE. This is why we are failing. Blind allegiance to the red death cult is going to cost us a lot here. Maybe not everything. Hopefully not a return back to the hell of 2020. But misery and worry just the same. Shutdown again. The collateral damage will be high.

And worst of all, and I say this as a Christian myself, it all somehow stems from politics that wants to imbue religion, and too often, Christianity. Too many political radicals still cavorting about as if God himself sent down another son to guide them. This time he was painted in orange, disguised as a billionaire, and acted just like the devil. As it turns out, the Devil does wear Prada. Or at least his wife does.

And there are the Evangelicals, worshiping at the feet of that false idol like nobody else, all somehow in the name of Jesus. All the sudden we are all living in a Black Mirror Episode.

I’ll say this, if I were the devil I’d start out by getting everyone to distrust the government, and then I’d get them to distrust each other. And what better time to do that than during a pandemic when people are dying when they didn’t have to and suffering and misery ruled the land. Mission accomplished. Good job, Devil. You may have fooled them, but you haven’t fooled all of us!


And now, natural selection gets to weigh in. It will cost them. Is costing them. They will die, unnecessarily, and all of our newfound liberties and the return to what could have been regular life will begin to die with them. And now along with vaccinated folks as well. We are now dying. Children will die. Are dying.

Then there are the Long-haulers, dragging down an already rock bottom health care system. Orphans, already overwhelming an overcrowded social system. The list goes on and on.

Yet nothing I say or do here is going to matter to the anti-vaccine crowd because nothing else matters beyond their own self and their own sense of perceived freedom. They will more likley turn and place the blame anywhere and everywhere they can. Without logic. Without fact. And certainly without a shred of science nor conscience. And never where blame actually belongs. We now have all the statistical data we will ever need on the vaccine and it’s overwhelming and simple enough that a third grader could understand the numbers. It doesn’t matter, the confirmation bias is cemented to the ignorance and it’s solid as rock. Which is insane given the consequences here for being wrong.

I’d imagine dying from Covid is horrifying, but doing so taking in that last breath, knowing you could have so easily avoided it, has to be absolute horror. The knowledge that you were so completely wrong overwhelming any and all other thoughts about life in general as you take that last, labored breath, literally about to drown in your own ignorance. Being wrong, in the face of so much overwhelming data against your position, must be the worst enlightenment one could ever know. I can think of no worse way to go.

“He died because he was wrong about the vaccine.” Just brutal. But happening all over right now. All the rage. Families finally getting the shot to honor their dead. That’s one way to get your family vaccinated. No thanks.

School? Well, that ship has sailed away on the wave of Delta for sure. Any normalcy to that will be temporary, if at all. That alone has my blood boiling to the roof. And I hope yours is starting to boil as well because this is about to hit the fan and it’s time we threw it right back at the source. Masks are now the best case scenario for the school year. Great. But we will do what we have to.

Sigh. We had it all. We could be and should be an American success story. Covid left a mark we could learn from, but we beat Covid. Except we didn’t. We haven’t. And we still haven’t learned. And if something doesn’t change, we likely never truly will.

This failure of logic is going to cost us all. Make no mistake, nobody is immune to the political infection of the embracement of misinformation that has raised its profound cost to the American people along with most of the World. And never has there been something more preventable, such that this should be a crime against humanity.

Kinda hard to be optimistic. So what can be done?

It’s time to speak up. It’s time to speak out. Share this like you mean it. Write your own piece and include it. Make a call to an anti-vaxxer and tell them you care about them, our country, and everything else that’s at stake here including their own lives. They almost certainly won’t listen. Until, that is, they have heard it from 50 different people. Maybe not then even, but we have to try.

We can’t hide behind those false-freedom 4th of July party photos any longer. We can’t afford to avoid our unvaccinated friends and family because it’s uncomfortable. Because they won’t listen. “No” is not an option. And besides, what kind of friend lets another friend avoid something that could not only save their life, but also stop them from getting and passing along something that could kill somebody else? Not a very good one.

Make no mistake, this must be done by all of us, collectively and routinely, until we thin the herd that is keeping us from reaching herd immunity without their assistance, cooperation, and for the Love of God, their goodwill towards other men.

The course we have taken finally had a victory, but it was short-lived. Now, here we are. It’s too late to stop this wave, but we must do all that we can to try. For if we do not, then we will all watch in horror as that victory lap spins out of control. To say nothing is to be compliant. Compliance is the avoidance of success here and that is unacceptable as dead loved ones will prove.

On the front row, once again, are small businesses. The stock market. The global economy. The supply chain. The Service Industry. Bars. Musicians. Performers. The elderly. Children.

If not for yourself, then for everything else.

So please, reach out. Speak up. And share anything and everything you can to get these poor people to listen.

It’s never too late because it is the only way out of this, once and for all.

I urge you to get out in front of, and in the way of THE BIGGER LIE. Condemn Republicans who put party before people and their own liberty above the lives of others and the financial and emotional health of our once great Nation. Condemn Democrats and anyone else when they do the same.

Delete antyhing FOX from all your Televisions and devices and stand in the way of misinformation when you see it. Argue against backwards logic with true logic and sound science.

I know it’s hard to fight fear with fact and ignorance with intelligence when the enemy has no eyes and no ears. But it must be done. It’s all we have. And maybe, just maybe, if everyone stepped up to the plate and did so at the same time — like right now — maybe we can somehow keep this wave below some lesser peak of bringing nearly everything back down into this hell again.

Let’s show the world we are better than we look right now, and reap the benefits on the other side. Together, as Americans, let’s LEAD the world out of this by our example. We were there, and we can get there again, but not without bashing all this profound resistance. What better time than now?

We can only be this United States of America when we have beaten this virus into submission with the best weapon we have: vaccination. Just as we would any other foe that might invade our shores and cost us that one thing that we hold so sacred: Freedom. We may not win this war, but we must never stop fighting because that’s what we do as Americans. If Freedom defines us, then we must find it again and never let ignorance and misinformation get in the way of it ever again.

So speak up, and hope and pray these people start listening to the truth instead of the political lies and conspiracy theories that have poisoned not just their minds, but also the world they live in. The world that we all live in.

And may God give us all the serenity needed to change the things we cannot accept, and the courage to face those who will not change, and the wisdom to know sharing what we know to be right is the only solution to fix that which is so absolutely wrong.



Tommy Hazleton

I wanna be a lot of things such as a great husband and father, an objective thinker, and a careful and caring writer who somehow makes a difference with words.