Without Effective Vaccines, Covid-19 “Herd Immunity” is Genocide

Physics of Shadow and Light
5 min readSep 27, 2020
Photo of Irish graveyard by author

Ebola Herd Immunity?

Why has no one tried uncontrolled herd immunity for AIDS? What about Polio and Smallpox? What about Ebola? Why not let Ebola run its course through our population? “But that’s different,” you say, “Ebola is terrible, bloody and deadly.” Yes. And Covid-19 killed 204,000 times as many Americans as Ebola did. Many of those deaths were painful, tragic and lonely.

There is no gentler way to put it. People who advocate letting Covid-19 run through our population to establish uncontrolled herd immunity without a vaccine are advocates of genocide. As Dr. Anthony Fauci puts it, “The death toll would be enormous.” Even more enormous than it already is where more than 1000 Americans die of Covid-19 each day, adding to the already grim loss of 204,000 American lives, the equivalent of sinking 136 Titanics.

Why You Don’t Know Any Victims?

As of today Covid-19 has taken approximately 204,000 of 330,000,000 American lives. How can that many people die and you not know one of its victims? That’s about 1 in every 1600 Americans. Look at your social media list, you may have 1600 acquaintances but it’s unlikely you have that many friends or family.

Covid-19 doesn’t strike Americans evenly. If you don’t know anyone who died of it, chances are you’re white, have above average income and don’t know anyone working in food service or healthcare. Covid-19 hits black, Latino, native American, disabled, poor and critical food industry workers especially hard.

It’s morally wrong to let this disease run its course when we know other options have worked in most of the world. As a society we can’t afford to let it run its course, at least if we claim that all lives matter.

But like Hydroxycholoroquine and convalescent plasma, the idea of a quick and simple miracle cure is too attractive to be stopped by something as mundane as reality. So a number of countries have tried and continued to try the approach of denying that this disease is as deadly as it is.

Sweden’s Controlled Herd Immunity Failure

Sweden tried a targeted natural herd immunity by isolating the most vulnerable people and relying on selfless individuals to do the right thing. This approach resulted in the unnecessary death of thousands of people, much more than other Scandinavian countries and only got about 15% antibody immunity. Now the disease is coming back stronger there than in neighboring countries. Sweden’s approach backfired. As of today there were 5,880 Covid-19 deaths in Sweden compared to 270 in Norway, 343 in Finland and 649 in Denmark.

But in the U.S. and other parts of the world politicians and individuals ignore this failure and point to Sweden’s approach as an example of what they wish was true. They want to believe that we can bypass the deaths and disabilities.

Britain’s Uncontrolled Herd Immunity Failure

Britain also experimented with the hands off approach to Covid-19 until Prime Minister Boris Johnson almost died of it and then he began taking it seriously. Brazil tried this approach which resulted in the death of more than 150,000.

Donald Trump’s Herd Immunity Plan

A few weeks ago Donald Trump brought Scott Atlas onto the Whitehouse pandemic response team. Scott Atlas has tried to stop people from portraying him as an advocate of uncontrolled herd immunity, but his actions and words have endorsed the path Donald Trump is taking, forcing schools to open, business as usual and not wearing masks. with the schools open, maskless, business as usual. Donald Trump’s strategy appears to be to let Covid-19 run through the 330 million people in the U.S. This would result in the death of more than two million Americans.

“It would go away without the vaccine, George, but it’s going to go away a lot faster with it…And you’ll develop — you’ll develop herd — like a herd mentality. It’s going to be — it’s going to be herd-developed, and that’s going to happen. That will all happen. But with a vaccine, I think it will go away very quickly.”

— President Trump

Florida’s Genocide Experiment

Gov De Santis shared recently shared the CDC’s estimated Covid-19 infection fatality estimate planning numbers. These are only estimates but I’ll give him credit by not forgetting what percent means and being off by a factor of 100 (10,000%) as FoxNew’s infographic was.

Here is a chart of Florida population by age:


From the 2020 estimates we’ll see how many are in the Covid-19 50–69 infection fatality category:

Adding :
50–54 (1,302,262) +
55–59 (1,470,728) +
60–65 (1,443,760) +
65–69 (1,291,871) gives:

5,508,621 Floridians in the 50–69 age range.

The table Ron De Santis shared shows a Covid-19 survival rate of 99.5% in ages 50–69 which means a mortality rate of (100%-99.5%) = 0.5%,

So, if Governor Ron DeSantis lets Covid-19 run through the Florida population, 80% will become infected before herd immunity slows the spread. 0.8 * 5,508,621 = 4,406,897

And with an age 50–69 Covid-19 Infection fatality of 0.5%:

4,406,897 * 0.005 = 22,034 Covid-19 deaths in Florida in the 50–69 age range.

Running the same numbers for the 3,173,298 Floridians over age 70 where the infection fatality rate is more than 10 times higher at 5.4% and Florida would have another 137,086 age 70+ Covid-19 deaths before reaching herd immunity.

This is the “business as usual” death toll. But it can be much lower if we slow the spread until effective vaccines are developed. Vaccines can give us herd immunity without killing tens of thousands of Floridians and millions of Americans. According to The Economist, Covid-19 victims age 70–79 lose an average of 12 years to this disease compared to their normal lifespan.

Today Governor De Santis is opening up Florida and Wisconsin’s Republican legislature is trying to reverse Governor Evers’ emergency Covid-19 order. It will be business as usual for the spread of this deadly disease.

Herd Immunity = Genocide

The phrase “herd immunity” has entered our language as a shorthand for quickly getting past the Covid-19 pandemic without a vaccine by partying like its 1999. If only this were true. In reality we should correct anyone who uses this phrase outside the context of effective and tested vaccines and tell them, “Herd immunity? Oh, you mean genocide.” Because that’s exactly what they are advocating.



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