Los Angeles Times’ Michael Hiltzik devoted his Monday column to defending the admittedly “ghoulish” practice of mocking people who die of COVID-19 without being vaccinated against the disease.
Under the headline “Mocking anti-vaxxers’ deaths is ghoulish, yes — but necessary,” Hiltzik essentially argued that unvaccinated Americans have it coming — with “it” being illness, death and derision.
- “On the one hand, a hallmark of civilized thought is the sense that every life is precious,” wrote Hiltzik, a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist. “On the other, those who have deliberately flouted sober medical advice by refusing a vaccine known to reduce the risk of serious disease from the virus, including the risk to others, and end up in the hospital or the grave can be viewed as receiving their just deserts.”
- Hiltzik went on to criticize former Orange County District Attorney Kelly Ernby, a Republican vaccine skeptic who recently died of COVID-19, and to defend mocking her and her ilk.
“It may be not a little ghoulish to celebrate or exult in the deaths of vaccine opponents. And it may be proper to express sympathy and solicitude to those they leave behind,” he wrote. “But mockery is not necessarily the wrong reaction to those who publicly mocked anti-COVID measures and encouraged others to follow suit, before they perished of the disease the dangers of which they belittled.”