NBC News
The presence of a vaccine to protect against COVID-19 could make daily life closer to the pre-pandemic normal than it is for most Americans right now. But the obstacles of getting Americans to accept COVID-19 vaccinations may be even greater than those in getting one developed in record time to fight this novel, contagious and deadly virus. For one, Americans' distrust in scientific experts and institutions was percolating long before COVID-19 was a global issue — and the strong anti-vaccine movement is one of the starkest symptoms of that growing distrust. The refusal to take vaccines had already been spreading across the country over the past decade; that movement has not missed its moment during the pandemic. Wild, unfounded allegations that the pandemic was in fact a “plandemic” were spearheaded by an organized group of anti-vaxxers online, determined to sow misinformation about the novel coronavirus.