Chet Hanks has posted a rant against coronavirus vaccines and told sufferers of the virus to “get over it,” a year after his parents, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, were hospitalized with severe cases of Covid-19.
Hanks shared a video on Instagram in which he initially pretended to encourage followers to get vaccinated. He then screamed “Sike!” and shouted: “You ain’t sticking me with that m*therf**king needle,” before erroneously comparing Covid-19 to the flu.
The musician’s parents were among the first well-known people to contract the virus last March and isolated in an Australian hospital with severe symptoms.
“My wife lost her sense of taste and smell, she had severe nausea, she had a much higher fever than I did,” Hanks told the Guardian last year, adding that he had “crippling body aches, I was very fatigued all the time and I couldn’t concentrate on anything for more than about 12 minutes.”
The Covid-19 vaccines approved in the United States have been found to be safe and highly effective, and real-world data from around the world shows that the shots are reducing transmission and drastically lowering the chances of hospitalization and death.
Chet Hanks told followers he won’t be getting a shot because he “never had Covid,” and said those who suffer from the disease should “get over it … Why we working around y’all?”
He also turned on mask-wearing in his evidence-free rant, saying he was “tired” of wearing a face covering. Last year, his father told reporters that wearing a mask is “so simple, so easy, if anybody cannot find it in themselves to practice those three very basic things – I just think shame on you.”
“My Lord, it’s common sense,” Tom Hanks added of mask-wearing and other health precautions like hand-washing and social distancing.
Tom Hanks and Wilson caught Covid-19 just as the disease was beginning to spread around the world and days before Europe and the United States imposed their first lockdowns.
During their illness, Chet released a video, saying of his parents: “They’re not even that sick.” But the pair subsequently described “crippling” symptoms, which hit Wilson particularly badly. “I felt extremely achy, uncomfortable, didn’t want to be touched, and then the fever started,” Wilson told Gayle King last April, adding that she suffered from “chills like I never had before.”
About half of Americans are fully vaccinated against Covid-19. The country’s rollout slowed in recent months but has now begun to pick up pace, as the more transmissible Delta variant spreads across the country and transmissions rise.