TWISTED SISTER frontman Dee Snider says that he is in favor of some kind of a coronavirus vaccine passport program whereby concert venues can ask patrons to show proof of testing or vaccination before attending certain events.
A vaccine passport is a physical or digital document that displays whether someone is fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Critics say that such passports are a violation of privacy and an example of government overreach. Meanwhile, supporters point out that federal immigration law already requires that immigrants provide proof of vaccination status for several diseases.
Snider addressed the hot-button issue in a tweet earlier today (Wednesday, April 21). He wrote: "I get that some people are wary of this, but I want a vaccine passport in the worst fucking way! I wave my vaccination card around like a flag! I've got nothing to hide and if a vaccine passport will let me go places without all these covid protocols sign me the fuck up!"
Dee is not the only heavy metal musician to throw his support behind the "vaccine passport" idea. Earlier this month, TESTAMENT guitarist Alex Skolnick said that the recent announcement by various clubs and promoters around the country that they will begin staging events for only those guests who show proof of full vaccination is "what we need to do." He explained: "To go to certain countries, we need to get a yellow fever shot, and we carry this card that's put out by the World Health Organization that is proof of vaccination. What's the difference? We've been doing this for years. We wouldn't think otherwise. We don't wanna risk getting somebody else sick. So why would there be an issue here? And then, when people complain about the vaccine — 'I don't know what's in it. I'm suspicious…' Well, are you suspicious of the polio vaccine? 'Cause I think everybody gets that. I don't think you leave the hospital without getting certain vaccines."
Alex added: "I'm just amazed how people aren't aware of this. There's measles, mumps, polio… There's vaccines that we've been getting for years, and that's why we're not getting measles or mumps, or why we're not being forced to not be able to walk because of polio — because we get these vaccines. And the same medical and scientific communities that are behind those vaccines are behind these vaccines.
"My patience is running thin for these types," Skolnick concluded.
So far, roughly 40.1% of the population has gotten at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And about 26% of the population is fully vaccinated, that data shows.
At least 568,532 people have already died from COVID-19 in the United States, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
A recent NPR/Marist poll found that one in four Americans said they would refuse a coronavirus vaccine if offered. Another 5% are "undecided" about whether they would get the shot. 49% of Republican men said they would not take the vaccine when it's available to them.
Although the COVID-19 vaccine was produced quickly because of the urgency of the health crisis and the number of clinical trial volunteers, scientists say the vaccine was not rushed, and it relies on years of research.
The nation's top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, has estimated that about 70-85% of Americans would need to be vaccinated to reach herd immunity.
America's two main vaccines have shown 95% efficacy against the coronavirus.
Johnson & Johnson's vaccine, which became available in the United States last month after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gave it emergency use authorization, was tested with new variants of COVID-19, and has shown to be effective against them; Pfizer and Moderna were tested prior to the emergence of these variants.