Six macaques were vaccinated last month with a vaccine developed by scientists at Oxford and then exposed to a large amount of coronavirus, and there was nothing wrong with them.
Over a month later, all six brave monkeys are, thank God, alive and well, happily crunching peanuts and winking at females from neighboring cages, and we rejoice with them too because one horror could soon be over.
We can’t really wait for September when, according to the announcements, the vaccine could be ready for wide use.
“Rhesus macaques are the closest thing to humans we have,” one scientist told the New York Times, and this statement took us back in time, one hundred and eighty-five years ago.
A ninety-foot Royal Navy sailboat sailed in September 1835 to the Galapagos, an uninhabited archipelago nine hundred miles off the coast of Ecuador, and disembarked twenty-four-year-old Charles Darwin, who on a five-year voyage passionately recorded his observations on both plant and animal species on the island.
On a patch of land in the endless Pacific high seas, he noticed how mockingbirds were slightly different from mockingbirds as he had seen on the South American continent, and in that moment he had a thought that animals change from place to place, adapting to the environment.
As soon as that thought occurred to him, Darwin knew that this was a terrible ungodly thought because in the Bible, in the Book of Genesis, it is clear that all living beings have always been the same, unchangeable since the good God made them on the sixth day of the world.
The young naturalist, however, did not waver.
His bold assumption from the Galapagos was the seed of the theory of evolution set forth in his work „The Origin of Species“, published almost a quarter of a century later.
Darwin was not in a hurry, he thoroughly researched, dissected, observed, drew and supported his theory with numerous examples, knowing that the faithful would attack him.
And he was attacked, as you know, by Christians from all sides, Catholics, Orthodox, Protestants, Anglicans, Methodists, Baptists, Mormons and others who were purely furious at the claim that life on Earth evolved from simpler forms to more complex ones for billions of years. It upset and offended them that humans and apes have common ancestors.
Bishops of all denominations resented Darwin for devaluing and defiling the great miracle of God by bringing into our extended family some lowly and unworthy creatures leaping from branch to branch.
But here we are today, six macaques have recently received a coronavirus vaccine.
Oxford scientists checked it on them and it seems they have succeeded in making the vaccine.
If the macaques, our cousins, are not sick, chances are good that we humans will stay healthy too.
This is a logic that almost everyone accepts.
However you imagine life on Earth began, every milliliter dose of clear solution that will be injected into billions of upper arms with a hollow needle will in one way contain a thought that first occurred to a young naturalist in the Galapagos in September 1835.
There would simply be no vaccine without Charles Darwin.
Even bishops, who would burn the author of The Origin of Species at a bonfire in other times, and who ardently deny having anything in common with lowly and unworthy beings leaping from branch to branch, must admit it.
All in all, Catholics, Orthodox, Protestants, Anglicans, Methodists, Baptists and Mormons, just like Jews and Muslims, and Buddhists and Hindus, will eventually be saved by the theory of evolution.
Sure, you can also be one of those idiots who won’t get vaccinated, but this is not about you.
The subject of our interest are the animals that help to save us from the disease.
This is not the first time that they have unknowingly and involuntarily sacrificed themselves for the benefit of humanity.
It is strange how many people get angry when they are associated with monkeys, even though monkeys have never done them any harm.
On the contrary, due to the discovery of Charles Darwin, monkeys have so far suffered incomparably worse.
Research into the coronavirus vaccine is just one in a series of biomedical studies that we have used them in the same way people once used slaves to test the food of emperors and sultans to make sure it was not poisoned.
In the last century, there have been many more dangerous diseases and unpleasant injections received by our hairy relatives, and not only macaques.
Both chimpanzees and orangutans were locked in laboratory cages until a ban on experiments with large primates came about twenty years ago.
It’s a good time to remember everything they did for us, as we fought tuberculosis, and measles, and polio, and who knows what other infections.