For some who are terminally online, the phrase “Hubby started running fever. I have the paste” may go down as one of the most haunting moments of a deadly pandemic stretching ever closer toward its second full year. It hasn’t been great, but at this point, if you’re a fully vaccinated person following best social distancing practices and using masks, there’s really not much more you can do to help those who cannot help themselves.
Which is why the rise of anti-vaxxers using an animal dewormer called Ivermectin is so baffling to watch from afar. Through a series of far right grifts, the animal medication has become an object of obsession from people who believe the entirely unproven claim that the “horse paste” can prevent or cure coronavirus. In some places, people are overdosing on the paste that’s not properly dosed for humans, and even Joe Rogan is downing the paste to stave off his own COVID-19 infection.
The Daily Show is certainly not afraid to seize upon weird right-wing phenomena and make fun of it. Recently, the show has advertised a fake law firm for Capitol rioters. And on Friday, that fake commercial trend continued with an ad for an even “more effective horse medicine” to use instead of just, you know, getting a vaccine.
“The only COVID vaccine designed specifically for horses,” the ad reads, which is a willful misunderstanding of why anti-vaxxers are looking for any solution to coronavirus but the vaccination designed for humans.
Videos like these do nothing to actually end the pandemic, but they do cast a stark light on the lengths people will go to avoid following best practices because of their conspiracy-addled brains. But maybe, just maybe, it’s a kernel of a good idea for vaccine marketers if things stay as bleak as they currently are.