12:09 PM PT -- There's nothing for African-Americans to fear about the vaccination effort, because it wasn't rushed and a Black doctor was at the forefront of research ... so says Dr. Louito Edje.
The good doc joined us on "TMZ Live" Monday and offered an easy-to-understand analogy about the vaccine process ... telling us why it's like a cake that's been carefully baked for 20 years and just needed the right icing.
Dr. Edje also points out Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett, an African-American scientist, led the team behind the COVID-19 vaccine and even got the shot herself.
The first vaccine in New York was administered Monday -- and the person they chose to give it to speaks volumes about very real concerns regarding safety and mistrust of the government.
The recipient was intensive-care nurse Sandra Lindsay, a Black woman working in healthcare, and she got the shot at the Long Island Jewish Medical Center in Queens. Before the deed was done, Sandra was hailed for her bravery ... for getting vaccinated in public, and for months of work treating COVID patients on the front lines.
As the doctor, also a woman of color, injected the needle ... Sandra didn't even flinch, and got a big round of applause.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo was on standby, watching the inoculation virtually. He noted Sandra didn't make a fuss about it and that the doc who did it -- Dr. Chester --- must have a good touch. Sandra responded that it felt like any other shot or vaccine she's gotten before.
The fact New York decided to publicize the first Pfizer vaccination with 2 women of color shouldn't be lost on folks.
As we've mentioned, and as the federal government has noted too, African-Americans are highly suspicious of this vaccination effort, and many say they won't take it or don't trust it.
There's a myriad of reasons why, but we got an up-close and personal look at that mindset this weekend with none other than Offset ... who told us straight-up he wasn't planning to get the shot.