Since the rise of the COVID crisis, the medical treatments to battle it have been under criticism. Especially in light of the disturbing trend of young, vaccinated athletes falling prey to medical maladies. Those same conversations – and comparisons to stricken Buffalo Bills star Damar Hamlin – popped back up this week when the news about Bronny James hit.
The 18-year-old son of NBA icon Lebron James had to be rushed from a USC basketball workout when he suffered a cardiac arrest. The phenom was rushed to a local medical facility and reportedly should be fine, but that didn’t stop the guesses on what might have caused the attack. By all weights and measures, Bronny James is very healthy and in incredibly good shape. Why would such a shooting star suddenly fall like that?
It harkened back to January of this year when 22-year-old Buffalo Bills safety Damr Hamlin fell to the field after making a tackle on Monday Night Football against the Bengals’ Tee Higgins. He would ALSO suffer a cardiac arrest, right there – live, and in living color.
Both alarming incidents have fueled the fire that perhaps COVID vaccinations like Moderna might not be all the are cracked up to be. While millions of Americans rushed out to “get the jab,” there’s a huge population that either thinks it’s all just a hoax – or even worse; it could have utter and terrible effects.
Even Elon Musk weighed in, saying that he believed myocarditis (which has been theorized to be a side effect of the inoculation) might have contributed to both of the young athletes’ separate incidents. And while medical reports have been inclusive thus far, there’s plenty to suggest that there may be some fire to go along with this smoke. Or at least enough that it’s worthy of discussion.
So, in the fallout of the past few years, there’s been an odd mix of believers and non-believers. At least, thus far. Having said that, however, you can’t stop people from speculating. Especially in the current environment, where misinformation seems to reign supreme, and perception is reality.
“We cannot ascribe everything to the vaccine, but, by the same token, we cannot ascribe anything,” Musk wrote in response to the Bronny James’ reports. “Myocarditis is a known side-effect. The only question is whether it is rare or common.”
Damar Hamlin returned to practice this week with the Buffalo Bills to a hero’s welcome. It was almost magical, to see the fans of Upstate New York’s favorite football team applaud the return of one of their own. The Bills Mafia were waiting with open arms to greet a fallen friend.
Meanwhile, the prognosis looks good over on the west coast, too. Bronny James will surely rebound from all this. He’ll suit up for USC this fall and perhaps play in the NBA someday. Maybe even alongside his famous father, who has publicly stated that he would love the opportunity to finish his career on the court with his son. And for the James family? There couldn’t be a better, storybook finish to Lebron’s magical mystery tour of greatness.
But what about the next young athlete? What happens if they suffer the same kind of medical situation, and don’t have the chance to live their dreams? What if they don’t get the storybook “Happy Ending?” Proponents of more research are asking those same questions currently. Not just for themselves… But for Bronny James, Damar Hamlin, and every other young athlete that ever laces up their sneakers again.