The headline reads:

“Breakthrough COVID infections show ‘the unvaccinated are now putting the vaccinated at risk’”

HTTPS://WWW.PBS.ORG/NEWSHOUR/HEALTH/BREAKTHROUGH-COVID-INFECTIONS-SHOW-THE-UNVACCINATED-ARE-NOW-PUTTING-THE-VACCINATED-AT-RISK?

This assertion is used by those calling for mandatory vaccination and this article argues for the assertion. I’ve read the article very carefully and have made notes. I think I’ve refuted the proposition. Am I correct?

“… health experts say that rare “breakthrough infections” among vaccinated people are not a sign that vaccines are failing. Instead, they are a warning of how vaccine holdouts can endanger even their inoculated neighbors.”

Granted that statistics I’ve seen suggest that the unvaccinated are 20 times as likely to be hospitalised as the vaccinated in the US (and 3 times as likely in the UK but no more likely in Israel), there is, afaik, no evidence that vaccinated people are more or less likely to be infected or that if infected that they carry any reduced viral load. In fact, Fauci confirms that the viral load is the same in vaccinated and unvaccinated people and uses this as an argument for vaccinated people to continue using masks.

If infected people carry the same viral load whether they are vaccinated or not and symptoms are much milder in the vaccinated then it is follows that fewer vaccinated people will be obviously sick and more of them will be walking around and able to infect others. By this logic (tell me if I’m mistaken) the vaccinated are much more of a danger to the unvaccinated than the other way around.

“Mounting research suggests the variants are placing greater strain on the vaccines. When people are infected with the delta variant, Huffman said they produce a thousand times greater viral load than seen from the original COVID-19 strain. That means the delta variant is more efficient at spreading and every time an infected person coughs, sneezes or speaks, they potentially release much more of the virus — and opportunities to get someone else sick — than earlier in the pandemic.”

Why would the delta variant result in a viral load 1000 times greater than the original variant? The only explanation that comes to mind (feel free to give others) is that it takes a much bigger load of delta to knock out the host. This must be because the virus is weaker or the host is stronger or both of these things are true.

If the infected vaccinated and the infected unvaccinated carry the same viral load but the unvaccinated are much more likely to become symptomatic it follows that the vaccinated have developed a greater tolerance to the virus. The vaccinated are not killing the virus or being killed by it, their immune systems must have stopped fighting and are allowing the the virus to multiply. This is consistent with what I have said previously.

“With only about half of the nation’s population — 163.3 million people — fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, the vaccine’s advantages begin to erode, said Weissman, a physician and infectious disease expert at the University of Pennsylvania.”

Is this true? What’advantages’ are eroded?We are told that “The unvaccinated are now putting the vaccinated at risk.” but how?

“When scientists developed vaccines to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, their vaccine candidates were judged effective based on whether or not people were hospitalized or died after getting immunized. Even with delta, almost everyone who dies from COVID-19 — 99.5 percent of known cases — are unvaccinated people, along with 97 percent of people hospitalized for the illness. That suggests that the vaccines are still highly effective, said U.S. Surgeon General and Dr. Vivek Murthy during a recent press briefing. The CDC is counting vaccinated people who have been hospitalized or died from the coronavirus. Based on data available so far, that very rarely happens.”

How is it possible to hold that the overwhelming number of deaths are among the unvaccinated, that it is very rare for the vaccinated to be hospitalised, and at the same time to hold that it is the vaccinated who are being put at risk?

“in the U.S., no one knows exactly how many breakthrough cases there really are because nationwide data doesn’t exist. The agency does not count vaccinated people who have been diagnosed with the disease but are asymptomatic or have only mild symptoms, said Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health.”

Why would any agency that was interested in the efficacy of the vaccines in preventing transmission not count the incidence of infection among vaccinated people?

“The risk of a breakthrough infection for vaccinated people with symptoms upon exposure to the delta variant is reduced by seven-fold and that reduction is 20-fold for hospitalizations and death, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, who directs the CDC, said Tuesday.”

This is a very badly phrased sentence but it merely repeats the assertion that vaccinated people are less likely to become symptomatic.

“However, the CDC does track cohorts of fully vaccinated essential workers, including those in the health care and long-term care industries, to better understand how protective vaccines are. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the White House’s chief medical advisor, told PBS NewsHour anchor Judy Woodruff on Tuesday that, from those cohorts, they are seeing data showing that fully vaccinated people who get infected “clearly can transmit it to other people.”

“So how it this consistent with the headline argument that:

“… health experts say that rare “breakthrough infections” among vaccinated people are not a sign that vaccines are failing. Instead, they are a warning of how vaccine holdouts can endanger even their inoculated neighbors.”?

At this point I stop reading carefully. I’ve done enough and I lose interest. The vaccinated can be crawling with the bugs and still appear well. Okay. Your choice how you manage your immune system but don’t say that the unvaccinated are putting the vaccinated at risk when all the evidence you’ve cited, your own arguments, contradict that conclusion.