Supermodel Doutzen Kroes said in a defiant social media post that she would not be getting vaccinated for the coronavirus.
Kroes spoke out after a self-imposed six-month break from social media. The 36-year-old said that others had inspired her to speak her truth about her stand against forced vaccination.
“I will not be forced to take the shot. I will not be forced to prove my health to participate in society. I will not accept exclusion of people based on their medical status,” Kroes wrote.
“Freedom of speech is a right worth fighting for but we can only solve this united in peace and love!” she added.
“Pass on the torch of hope and love and speak your truth,” she concluded.
The post received more than 342,000 “likes” on Instagram and more than 48,000 comments, many of them critical of her public stance against vaccines.
Among her supporters was fellow superstar model Gisele Bundchen, who chastised those critical of Kroes’ post.
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“I can’t believe the hate being directed at her because she expressed her feelings,” wrote Bundchen. “It saddens me to see all the judgment and the lack of empathy in so many people’s hearts. Hate is not the answer.”
Kroes has more than 6.9 million followers on Instagram. She became one of the more successful fashion models after being a lingerie model for Victoria’s Secret.
President Joe Biden announced the first federal vaccine mandate on Sept. 9 after his administration previously said that it was not the role of the executive to issue such mandates. That mandate applies to employees of companies with more than 100 workers.
Although there has been a spike in new cases of the coronavirus in the U.S., the pandemic appears to have plateaued, with the seven-day-average hovering at about 140,000 per day. The previous spike reached a seven-day-average of 250,000 daily cases in January.
Here’s more about the vaccine mandate in the U.S.: