TUCKER CARLSON (HOST): The CDC's chief medical officer, a person called Kathleen Dooling, unveiled her plan to distribute the vaccines nationally. She began by acknowledging that older Americans indeed faced the greatest risk, as everyone understood. So logically, if you wanted to save as many Americans as possible from dying, you would give preference, the very first shots, to people over 65, that's the obvious policy, it might be the only morally defensible policy.
But there was a problem with doing that, she explained. Older Americans were too white. As Dooling put it, quote "Racial and ethnic minority groups are underrepresented among adults age 65 and older." And this meant, according to Dooling, they could not be allowed to get to the first COVID shots, whether they needed them or not.
So instead, Dooling recommended giving priority to a group that the government started calling "essential workers." Their main qualifications were not that they were essential, but they were less white than old people. So that's what the CDC went with. Its panel overwhelmingly approved Kathleen Dooling's recommendation.
None of this got a lot of notice at the time, but it was a major change. Never in American history, modern history in any case, has the federal government made it official policy to withhold life-saving medical treatment from Americans on the basis of their skin color. But that's exactly what the CDC did. Those most likely to die of COVID had to wait weeks until their vaccines were approved. How many of them died in the meantime as they waited? No one kept track of those numbers because nobody seemed to care. And because nobody cared, the trend continued.
Race had become a deciding factor in the distribution of critical health care in this country. Several states made it explicit. Whites would go last in the COVID vaccine queue, regardless of need. The state of Vermont did this, so did the state of Montana. And then the moment he was declared president-elect, Joe Biden made it official. A concept called equity, a kind of hyper-aggressive, racially-hostile affirmative action would form the basis of everything the new administration did, beginning with COVID policy.