MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — A post made by local State Representative Barbara Drummond on Facebook expressing the pain of losing more than 20 loved ones due to COVID-19. Her message was very clear in stressing the importance of getting the vaccine, especially for African Americans who are still hesitant to get vaccinated.

“I have taken it. It is safe. This is not the Tuskegee Experiment. If you are in the group that they are now giving it to, I say passionately, I beg you. Please, go take the vaccine,” Drummond said.

It has been an emotional reality for Drummond who says the number 21 haunts her heart, which represents the number of friends she has lost due to COVID-19.

“I have been to more funerals than I care to even think about,” said Drummond.

After receiving her second dose of the vaccine on Friday, she said it’s upsetting to hear that many African Americans are still against getting the vaccine.

“African Americans are disproportionately affected by COVID-19. That’s one of the things that I don’t understand, we’re the ones who are more affected and I’m hearing from people, ‘I’m not going to take it,” Drummond said.

She said it’s a combination of lack of vaccine education and distrust in the government from the Tuskegee Experiment discouraging the Black community.

“The variables are not even the same. We have to stop using excuses and use our sense,” Drummond said. “You saying you don’t want the vaccine, but what is the alternative? The alternative is possibly death.”

That’s why she said she took to Facebook to lead by example and assure those who are still reluctant to take the risk.

“Those of you who are like myself have to step up to the plate. I am the person you see in Walmart; I am the person you go to church with. You see me every day out there and if I took it, it’s good enough for you,” said Drummond.

Vaccine distribution is widespread across our area, Drummond said there’s only one concern and that is assisting those in rural areas who lack proper transportation. She said she spoke with Dr. Eichold about coming up with a plan to fix it.