Wyomingites Who Won’t Get Covid-19 Vaccination Don’t Trust Vaccine or Government

Cowboy State Daily readers told us that lack of trust in the Covid-19 vaccine and the government are reasons they will not be getting vaccinated.

Annaliese Wiederspahn

February 16, 20214 min read

Another vaccine photo
(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

A few days ago, we posted a Wall Street Journal article on our Facebook page which said according to a United States Census Bureau poll, 34% of Wyoming citizens were not planning on getting a Covid-19 vaccination.

That put Wyoming fifth in the country for the highest percentage of residents who were not planning on getting the vaccine.  Wyoming trailed Louisiana, Mississippi, Idaho, and Alabama.

We asked our readers, if they were a part of that 34%, to explain why they were against receiving the vaccine.

Immediately there was criticism about the poll. Many of our commenters said 34% was way too low. It must be higher, they said.

Further, what did the Wall Street Journal know about Wyoming citizens, some said.

Well, it wasn’t the Wall Street Journal. It was the Census Bureau’s poll.

Regardless, the University of Wyoming released a similar poll just a day later. 

Those results? Similar.

38.2% of Wyoming citizens polled said they were very unlikely (31.1%) or somewhat unlikely (7.2%) to get the vaccine.

Assuming these polls are accurate, we asked our not-planning-on-getting-a-vaccine-readers why they felt like they did.

Of the many respondents who did not object to being identified, most didn’t think the vaccine was tested thoroughly enough.

Melanie Haresky, who is in the process of moving to Lovell with her husband George, said even though they are in the “high-risk group”, they will not be getting a shot.

“They don’t know the long term or short term effects of the vaccine. The people receiving the shots, at this point, are human guinea pigs! NO THANKS! We’ll take our chances,” Haresky wrote.

Dan Austin, from Rock Springs, said as a long-time (now retired) paramedic in the Los Angeles area, he has seen many disasters, catastrophes, and disease outbreaks. 

He said the commonality that binds them altogether is “how badly the government messed things up, just as they have with [the Covid-19 outbreak].”

“There was tremendous political pressure to rush a vaccine trough development, testing and into distribution. Having seen what goes into drug development, I’m not completely certain this vaccine has been vetted thoroughly and the untoward effects can’t be clearly understood,” Martin said.

“I prefer not to find out the hard way something was missed, or worse yet, not admitted do during the testing phase,” he said.

Newcastle’s Helmut Shucraft also said the vaccine wasn’t “worth the risk.”

“[Drug companies] are excused from liability so they can’t be held responsible for any adverse effects of the vaccine, plus why would I need a vaccine for a virus that has a 99.something% chance of survival? Not only that, but the vaccine doesn’t keep you from spreading it, so again, what’s the point?,” he said.

William Wilson, in the Worland area, echoed many other readers when he told us that he doesn’t trust the government and it wasn’t tested thoroughly enough. He also said that the “pandemic is a hoax” and “[Covid-19] is a flu strain.”

Justine, who asked us not to use her last name, is from Cheyenne and said she was not anti-vaccine but, like many, she does not believe the vaccine was tested appropriately before release.

“I need to know if the lifelong effects that may occur outweigh what might occur from the disease itself,” she said.

“Currently, this vaccine has not been around long enough to make that determination. So, I’m not currently willing to risk additional damage to my body from a vaccine in relation to a virus that has a pretty high recovery rate overall,” she said.

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Annaliese Wiederspahn

State Political Reporter