Perspectives: Arkansas Governor On Vaccination Mission; Steps Businesses Can Take To Create Covid Safe Zones
Opinion writers delve into covid, vaccines, booster shots and future pandemics.
Governor Makes Personal Plea To Reluctant Arkansans To Get Vaccinated
I recently saw a cartoon that depicted a young child looking up and asking about the scar on her mother’s arm. The mother points out that the scar is from the smallpox vaccine, and the young girl asks why she doesn’t have one. The mother’s answer, quick and simple: “Because it worked. ”The smallpox vaccine is one of the earliest successful vaccines. It was so successful that the last known smallpox outbreak in the U.S. was in 1949. And in 1980 the World Health Assembly officially declared smallpox eradicated. (Governor Asa Hutchinson, 8/4)
COVID Safe Zones At American Businesses Can Help Us End The Pandemic
As the COVID-19 delta variant rips through the nation, we will need more energy in the private sector to beat this pandemic. That’s why leaders across party and sector have come together to rally American businesses to maximize vaccinations and take other steps to ensure a safe workplace. We are at a crossroads in our efforts to address the delta wave and move beyond COVID-19. Roughly 165 million Americans – representing 58% of the eligible population – have been fully vaccinated, providing substantial protection against illness and death, while reducing missed workdays, closures and burdens on hospitals. Increasing vaccination rates is the country’s most immediate and best hope of reaching population immunity and restoring our national vitality and way of life. (Dr. Mark McClellan, Andy Slavitt and John Bridgeland, 8/5)
San Diego Union-Tribune:
People Who Won't Get COVID-19 Vaccine Shouldn't Complain About Restrictions
It would be helpful if people who refuse the COVID-19 vaccine started viewing themselves as a public safety threat rather than victims of the growing requirements aimed at keeping them from spreading the deadly virus to others. Then they might understand why a majority of the public is frustrated and angry with them, as well as why businesses and governments are putting restrictions on commercial, employment and social opportunities for people who won’t get vaccinated. (Michael Smolens, 8/4)
The Boston Globe:
COVID-19 Booster Shots: Why Wait?
Well, that was fun while it lasted, no? The safety, the security, the mask-free concert-going, the euphoria of post-vaccination hugs. Then came the Delta variant. And then the Provincetown cluster. So what if we all weren’t going to be dancing at midnight downstairs at the Atlantic House (no judgment here, and, yes, I’ve done that too in the before time). There were lessons to be learned. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention took those lessons to heart and, depending on where you live or dine or party, well, many of the already-vaccinated are now advised to put those masks back on. (Rachelle G. Cohen, 8/4)
Booster Push Now Is Wrong And Dangerous. WHO Is Right
A growing number of wealthy countries including Israel and Germany are now launching or making plans for Covid booster-shot initiatives for parts of their populations amid evidence of waning immunity among some of the vaccinated. That’s prompted the World Health Organization to call for a moratorium on top-up shots through September or until all countries are at least 10% vaccinated. In the U.S., boosters aren't officially allowed, but people are going out and getting them on their own. The WHO has it right — the priority should be first vaccinations as long as supplies are limited and there's a huge global disparity in protection. (Max Nisen, 8/4)
The Washington Post:
As Bad As Covid-19 Has Been, A Future Pandemic Could Be Even Worse — Unless We Act Now
Coronavirus vaccines can end the current pandemic if enough people choose to protect themselves and their loved ones by getting vaccinated. But in the years to come, we will still need to defend against a pandemic side effect: collective amnesia. As public health emergencies recede, societies often quickly forget their experiences — and fail to prepare for future challenges. For pandemics, such a course would be disastrous. New infectious diseases have been emerging at an accelerating pace, and they are spreading faster. (Eric Lander, 8/4)
The New York Times:
Is The Future Just A Spike Protein Stamping On A Human Face, Forever?
Last week, I wrote about the measures we may need to take to persuade the unvaccinated to sign up for shots. This week, I want to explore the other side of the question: How much danger does the Delta variant pose to the vaccinated? In particular, how does it compare to the seasonal flu? I’ll be honest about the question-behind-my-question. I want to know if there’s an endgame here. In San Francisco, where I live, 70 percent of residents are fully vaccinated, and 76 percent are partially vaccinated. These are the kinds of numbers we were once told would carry us to herd immunity. Now the hope of herd immunity appears to be gone, and even in San Francisco we’re back to universal, indoor masking. I’m exhausted, and frustrated, and everyone else is, too. Is the future just a spike protein stamping on a human face, forever? (Ezra Klein, 8/5)