Times Columnist Praises Jennifer Aniston for Dropping Unvaxed Friends

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 19: Jennifer Aniston accepts the Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series award for 'The Morning Show' onstage during the 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 19, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. 721407 (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty …
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Turner

Times columnist Hilary Rose has praised Friends star Jennifer Aniston for dropping actual friends and acquaintances who will not disclose their vaccination status, saying: “Hear, hear, Jen, and respect for speaking out.”

Rose, who has been with the British newspaper of record since 1996, backed the 52-year-old actress in a column titled ‘I’m like Jennifer Aniston — I can’t be friends with antivaxers either’ — although her article was clear that she is cutting out “ditherers” as well as committed sceptics.

“To be clear, I’m not talking about the rabid antivaxer conspiracy theorists, who foam at the mouth in Trafalgar Square. They’re beyond help and indeed contempt,” the columnist sneered.

“I’m talking about the ostensibly rational people we all know, who get their news from social media… the people who fret about the vanishingly small risk of a blood clot, instead of the brutal reality of long Covid,” she said, adding that she “know[s] people who are quietly not invited to parties at the moment because they’re dithering and liable to want to talk about it”.

Rose explained that she has herself chosen to outsource her views on the question of vaccination to the expert consensus, admitting: “I scraped a C in biology. I know nothing about vaccines.”

“I cried when Professor Sarah Gilbert was given a standing ovation at Wimbledon,” she went on, in reference to the vaccinologist credited with the creation of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine who has since been dubbed, somewhat questionably, the “Barbie of Oxford”.

“If she and the entire medical establishment says that something is for my own good and — crucially — for the good of those around me, then who am I to disagree?” the columnist concluded.

Aniston, speaking to InStyle magazine, had said that she has “lost a few people in my weekly routine who have refused or did not disclose [whether or not they had been vaccinated], and it was unfortunate.”

“I feel it’s your moral and professional obligation to inform, since we’re not all podded up and being tested every single day,” she continued, conceding that “It’s tricky because everyone is entitled to their own opinion — but a lot of opinions don’t feel based in anything except fear or propaganda.”

The actress, who was herself not educated beyond her time at LaGuardia High School of Music, Art, and Performing Arts, later clarified that she does not want to be around unvaccinated or potentially unvaccinated people because “if you have the variant, you are still able to give it to me”.

“I may get slightly sick but I will not be admitted to a hospital and or die. BUT I CAN give it someone else who does not have the vaccine and whose health is compromised (or has a previous existing condition) — and therefore I would put their lives at risk,” she insisted.

In fact, people who have been “double-jabbed” can indeed be hospitalised with the Indian or Delta variant of the coronavirus, although British hospitalisation data suggests they are significantly less likely to be infected than the unvaccinated.

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