Laila Ali is facing major criticism after the former boxer and TV personality made an anti-mask and anti-vaccine statement on Twitter.
With America facing its second year of COVID-19, the only thing most people want to do is return to normalcy. However, the main thing everyone can’t seem to get on one page about is the route the world should take to get the virus under control. Some are pushing for people to wear masks and take one of the three vaccines to help reduce the risk of spreading it. However, others do not trust the vaccine and believe wearing masks not only reduces access to oxygen but is an infringement upon their freedom of choice to wear one.
Several celebrities have spoken out on where they stand with the solutions to ending the pandemic, and it appears that Ali has decided to stand with those that believe in the freedom of choice. In a now-deleted statement, she wrote, “People don’t seem to understand that just b/c some folks don’t wear masks, don’t want the shot, don’t listen to the media or live in fear…it doesn’t mean they don’t ‘believe’ the virus is real or think they can’t get it! They know it was created to harm humanity!”
The 43-year-old added that anti-vaxxers prefer to “trust their immune systems” and assured fans they “will deal with it” if infected with the virus. She also made a point to add that this decision is “a God given choice.” Ali, the daughter of legendary boxing great Muhammad Ali, added, “Before you claim they are ‘putting others in danger,’ you should do your own research to learn if that’s actually true. You can’t change anyone but yourself, So YOU DO YOU!”
Ali’s post was not deleted before it was screenshotted by a few critics who made some time to respond. One disappointed person wrote, “Laila Ali’s irresponsibility is genuinely disappointing. Especially given how her family is revered for uplifting and empowering our people.”
Another wrote, “So Laila Ali woke up and chose selfishness this morning, huh? These celebs “out” themselves every day. She shoulda kept that in the drafts.”
But not all were mad at Ali’s stance. Some agreed, saying “I agree with Laila Ali,” while others were thankful writing, “Thank you Laila Ali.”
On Wednesday, Aug. 18, medical experts from the United States Department of Health and Human Services released a statement saying that with the Delta variant of COVID-19 surging and with the knowledge that the efficiency of vaccines can diminish over time, they have found “that a booster shot will be needed to maximize vaccine-induced protection and prolong its durability.”
Currently, Pfizer and Moderna, the two vaccines that require two shots, have been approved for recipients to get a third booster shot eight months after their initial two shots. As for Johnson & Johnson, the third vaccine that only required one shot, experts are still gathering more data to see when those recipients might be able to get a third shot.