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(11,949 posts)
Fri May 14, 2021, 10:41 PM May 2021

Trying to manage a pandemic in the US is a lose-lose situation.

I’ve realized that our reaction to the new CDC order is greatly shaped by where we live. Here in Florida we have no mask mandates. Businesses are not penalized for failing to enforce distancing. That’s pretty recent since our governor struck down all local mandates. But in many red states has been that way from the git-go. So the only change the order brings is that those of us who have religiously followed the CDC recommendations and are vaccinated can ease up some. Fortunately I live in an area where masks are common.

But my point is about moving 2, 3 even 5 months into the future. We have 20-30% of Americans who will never get vaccinated. And they are not spread around equally. A few states will achieve a high enough rate to have herd immunity, whatever that means. But many states will never get much above 50% vaccinated because they are populated by people who seem to want to live in the Middle Ages.

So at some point the Biden Administration was faced with an awful decision. We can’t do what we are doing forever. The Americans who refuse to get the vaccine have been living their normal life from the beginning and don’t care one way or the other. But those who took the jab and are now safe are growing restless at the idea of changing their lifestyle to accommodate those who never have taken any precautions. That situation is not sustainable. Perhaps it should have been in June. Or July.

But regardless of when the call was made, the same DU debate would have occurred. Not enough people are vaccinated. But we will never have enough people vaccinated.

Sadly people will keep dying from Covid. And almost every one who dies will be people who refused the vaccine.

Like I said. A lose-lose situation.

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(15,265 posts)
1. This was seemingly a hand grenade tossed out with no warning to state governors.
Fri May 14, 2021, 11:53 PM
May 2021

If at the very least was very poorly handled. And that is being way too generous.


(11,949 posts)
4. I see your point. Not sure I agree.
Sat May 15, 2021, 12:11 AM
May 2021

Regardless of when the call was made we were never going to be at the 70-80% vaccinated we wanted. Because too many Americans will not get the vaccination.

But there are studies and just the raw data that shows the vaccines work way better than even the most optimistic thought.

In my state, Florida, if you are not vaccinated it’s generally because you are reluctant or resistant. We have tons of walk up sites now.

With the data we have it eventually becomes untenable to keep telling safe vaccinate people to keep changing their life’s.

Perhaps the Administration could have slow rolled it, meeting with governors and planning a date. But that would have also caused confusion especially since so many states are now doing nothing.

I just don’t see a good alternative. It’s a no win situation because so many Americans are idiots.


(15,265 posts)
9. Take off your masks and mingle with only 36% of the population vaccinated seems like stupid
Sat May 15, 2021, 03:28 AM
May 2021



(11,949 posts)
10. But of course, that is not the recommendation.
Sat May 15, 2021, 07:57 AM
May 2021

The recommendation is that the unvaccinated still mask.

Ms. Toad

(34,177 posts)
3. While I agree it is a lose-lose situation,
Sat May 15, 2021, 12:09 AM
May 2021

I disagree that thsi same discussion would have been had anytime the decision was made.

For one thing, no one under12 is eligible to be vaccinated - and the variants are both more serious and more contagious among youth thatn the original vaccine. Eligibility will change by late summer. At that point there will no longer be a large class of people who cannot be vaccinated. (Part of many people's reluctance at teh moment.)

In addition (and especially when no one under 12 can be vaccinated), recommendations regarding mask orders need to take into account the health implications of halting mask wearing. Until we have herd immunity and a low rate of COVID in our communities. Not only does the current recommendation not take into account protecting the under 12s and others who cannot be vaccinated, it fails to take into account the significantly greater risk of breakthrough infections in communities with low vaccination and high infection rates. (More opportunities for infection x risk of a breakthrough infection (5% for mRNA vaccines; 25% for J&J) = more breakthrough infections. More breakthrough infectons also increases the risk to people who cannot be vaccinated.

A responsible recommendaton would have been to announce that people who are fully vaccinated can, in a manner that is safe for themsevles and the most vulnerable in their community, remove their masks when the community infection rate is below 50 cases per 100,000 AND the vaccination rate in the community is above 70%.

That kind of recommendation does two things: It provides support for communities (and states like Michigan) who are trying to be responsible, AND it is actually supported by the science (taking the community safety into effect - not merely the safety of a single vaccinated indvidual)


(39,346 posts)
5. Well stated Ms. Toad
Sat May 15, 2021, 12:16 AM
May 2021

I wonder why this announcement was so abrupt and across the board. Nuance is too much for the populace apparently.


(11,949 posts)
6. Ms Toad. I can't disagree that this would be ideal.
Sat May 15, 2021, 12:26 AM
May 2021

But many states will never get to 70% vaccination rates. I’d be surprised if some make it to 55% or 60%. And in those states there are no mandates or business enforcement. Never will be. So it’s a hypothetical argument.

Once that fact becomes obvious the calculation changes. Telling vaccinated people, who are safe, to wait for an event that will never happen it a loser from the git-go.

Ms. Toad

(34,177 posts)
7. There is a benefit in having orders that require responsibility - and in guidelines
Sat May 15, 2021, 01:56 AM
May 2021

that make it clear what responsibility looks like. These guidelines do neither. They also encourage places that have orders in place to remove them. On Thursday, the county I live in (with 45% having started vaccination and around 150 cases/100,000) removed the orders based - in large part - on the CDC guidance. Had they had better guidance, they would might well have set conditional mask orders - based on the community reaching low cases, high vaccination or some combination of the two.

People didn't start wearing masks until there was an order, despite the state trusting people to do what is right (and insisting that people wouldn't follow orders if they were imposed. Once they were imposed, mask compliance in most indoor spaces was 90% or better - after being 50% prior to that time.

And, in an area with low vaccination rates and high infection rates, vaccinated people aren't safe. Vaccination is not perfect protection. Of 1000 exposures that would cause COVID, a person with an mRNA vaccination would still develop COVID 5% of the time (or 50 cases). With Johnson & Johnson, it is worse - 25% of the time, or 250 cases. Acquiring 1000 exposures happens a lot faster in a community with high infection and low vaccination than in one with low infection and high vaccination rates. In ddition, some of those infections (likely most) will be asymptomatic, so vaccinated people not wearing masks will more likely to become infected, and more likely to infect those under 12, or those who can't be immunized (or can't develop immunity).



(1,718 posts)
8. Would you prefer what they're doing in other countries, people getting arrested and jailed?
Sat May 15, 2021, 01:59 AM
May 2021

That kind of thing starts civil wars.

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