By NICK GILBERTSON Fictional Sesame Street muppets have taken to social media to encourage children to get vaccinated following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for the five to eleven age group.
In a tweet on Saturday morning, the imaginary character Big Bird pretended it received a coronavirus vaccine. “I got the COVID-19 vaccine today! My wing is feeling a little sore, but it’ll give my body an extra protective boost that keeps me and others healthy,” the tweet reads. “Ms. @EricaRHill even said I’ve been getting vaccines since I was a little bird. I had no idea! In a tweet, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) called Big Bird’s vaccine advocacy “Government propaganda…for your 5-year-old!”
Government propaganda…for your 5 year old! https://t.co/lKUlomnpq1
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) November 6, 2021
Oscar the Grouch’s Twitter account also posted about the vaccine.
Well this stinks. Apparently, the COVID-19 vaccines won’t make you feel grouchy at all! That’s what @KizzyPhD said at today’s town hall, anyway. You might get a sore arm and feel tired, so at least there’s that.
— Oscar the Grouch (@OscarTheGrouch) November 6, 2021
“Well this stinks. Apparently, the COVID-19 vaccines won’t make you feel grouchy at all!” the tweet stated. “That’s what @KizzyPhD said at today’s town hall, anyway. You might get a sore arm and feel tired, so at least there’s that.”
A tweet from Elmo’s Twitter account reads, “Elmo was so happy to talk to @DrSanjayGupta at the town hall today! Elmo learned that Elmo’s friends can get the COVID-19 vaccine now, and soon Elmo can too!”
Elmo was so happy to talk to @DrSanjayGupta at the town hall today! Elmo learned that Elmo’s friends can get the COVID-19 vaccine now, and soon Elmo can too!
— Elmo (@elmo) November 6, 2021
CNN’s Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta spoke with Elmo about vaccines at a November 6 CNN town hall for children, according to a tweet from the Post Millennial.
“So right now the vaccine is only for children five and older,” Gupta said. “So three and a half-year-old monsters – kids like you – probably going to have to wait a little bit longer until the new year, but scientists are working hard right now to make sure that you can get the vaccine as soon as possible.”
CNN’s Sanjay Gupta and Erica Hill tell Sesame Street’s Elmo he’s too young for the COVID vaccine, but “scientists are working hard” to change that. In the meantime, he has to keep wearing a mask. pic.twitter.com/e4q2BMWdGz
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) November 6, 2021
The rise in muppet vaccine advocacy follows the CDC’s November 2 recommendation for the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for children ages five through eleven. The same day, San Francisco Public Health Officer Dr. Susan Philip stated in a virtual town hall that children in the age group would soon have to provide proof of vaccination to enter indoor businesses.
On November 4, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) announced in an email to parents that students would be given Thursday, November 12 off in recognition of “Vaccine Awareness Day.” CEO of CPS Pedro Martinez stated the day off will be an “opportunity for parents and guardians to take their children five years of age and older to get vaccinated at their pediatrician’s office, at a healthcare provider, or at a CPS school-based site or community vaccination event.”