Whack a COVID Variant

COVID-19 continues to evolve—that is what viruses do. One way to look at it is that when a virus replicates, its copy is often not perfect. Some copies are weaker than the original, while some are stronger. The accuracy of the copy is relatively random (an oversimplification—but you get the idea).

The media is currently tracking the Omicron variant, which is concerning because it may be more contagious and may be able to bypass some of the antibodies that the vaccines provide.

I decided to see what is happening in my state—Virginia. Below is a graph of the different variants. No cases of the Omicron variant have been reported as of now. However, it is obvious that variants have infected more people than the original virus.

I was down for nearly three weeks with COVID in December 2020 and January 2021, so I most likely had the original COVID-19. However, the current threat is predominantly the Delta variant. The Delta variant has infected 12,063 people in Virginia, surpassing the 2,879 who had the Alpha—the original virus.

So far scientists have identified twelve variants in Virginia (not counting Omicron). Most likely there will be many more before this is over, which could put us in a game of medical “Whacka Mole” as treatments that work with one strain fail with other strains of the virus.

Even more scary is that we’ve done this to ourselves. Every unvaccinated person who is infected—whether they experience any symptoms or not—acts as a breeding ground in which the virus can mutate.

One final thought. As the number of variants increase, through DNA analysis, it may be possible to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, which person passed which virus to another. If so, a lot of lawyers will make a lot of money as victims sue the unvaccinated carrier who caused them to suffer from COVID.

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