Bills receiver Cole Beasley has been rather outspoken, though not generally well-informed, when it comes to his overall opposition to the idea of getting vaccinated to help protect himself and those around him from a virus that has killed over 600,000 people in the United States alone, and is now showing different strains to deal with.
In response to a Pro Football Talk tweet hypothesizing that vaccinated players should get breaks on things like being tested for marijuana, Beasley responded that he would be on board with the idea… if he can profit from it.
I’ll get vaccinated and be an advocate for it if Pfizer puts a percentage of its earnings from the vaccine in my wife’s name. https://t.co/2tOr9jjDaM
— Cole Beasley (@Bease11) July 20, 2021
In response to the idea that a player earning millions of dollars shouldn’t be doing this, Beasley wrote, “I’m not upset but if I’m pushing something with this platform they shouldn’t get free marketing. They are a business like everything else.”
Well, let’s unpack that. First of all, if Beasley wanted to profit from Pfizer’s vaccine, he could just buy stock. Second, while Pfizer reported a $3.5 billion profit from the vaccine in the first quarter of 2021, and could exceed $26 billion in the fiscal year, the vaccine is free to everybody. It’s not as if Pfizer is somehow exploiting the need for medication, as pharma companies are prone to do. Third, this isn’t an NIL argument. It’s not as if people are going to run and get vaccinated based on Cole Beasley’s word or sponsorship. Finally, it’s uniquely weird and distasteful to go right out there and say that your opinion about the vaccine is for sale.
Beasley has the right to say whatever he wants about the vaccine, but to make it about a personal profit after going all out to insist that the vaccine is just not for him? Not a great look.