Stuck in the Middle

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Photo Credit: Image by cromaconceptovisual from Pixabay

Wow, I am starting to feel like my old self, spring in the step, walking into a big box store to buy stakes for my new Thompson seedless vines, all the while leaving my mask in the car. Dare I risk it?

The governor says it’s okay to show my face now; but he is a former ice cream store owner/operator, so I am not sure he really gets anything other than trying to look and act conservative in a state that is quickly turning purple. (Another guy born with his finger in the air, under the sign of the God Janus.)

I look around me as I, for the first time in a year (?), venture about maskless, Crazy Nancy’s ‘spark of divinity’ evident upon my radiant face as I smile at those other shoppers and employees who are the real reason I shop where I shop. Got my mojo back? The fourth first lady is having a difficult time catching up as I am moving quickly towards the goal of my shopping mission – those manly, metal stakes that will soon support my beautiful red and green seedless bombs of sugar and love. I realize that even if my vines flourish, they still won’t yield anything close to a Sauvignon Blanc, but one can dream. …

Mr. Narrator (interrupts): “Richard Edward, snap out of it. Put your mask on. Most everyone else in the store is wearing one. Why do you think you are special? You want to cause a problem? You might cause a riot or even worse, drive complaints to Karen, the store manager. You really want that?”

Richard Edward: “Hey Mr. Narrator, chill, okay? The governor said I don’t have to wear one anymore. He said that COVID is defeated. He said that it’s up to the store to decide about the efficacy of mask wearing. So, if the store makes the decision about wearing the mask, it’s really not about science anymore, it’s about how safe one feels.”

Mr. Narrator: “That’s the problem Richard Edward, your feelings. You have none. How can you be so callous towards your fellow man? Walking about unmasked, an existential threat to all you pass in the isles of capitalistic excess. You may want to live dangerously, but others around you, those who actively seek safe spaces, don’t feel the same way. Your unmasked countenance scares them. What if you breath on them? Your halitotic exhale could mean their death? Are you really that inhumane?”

Richard Edward: “But science…. I’ve had COVID, Mr. Narrator. My doctor said I have the antibodies. No one talks about those of us who have been sick and recovered, only those who have the vaccine and those who don’t. I can’t infect anyone because I can’t get this again, at least not so soon after my recovery. I am the safest guy in the hood to be around. I am not vaccinated, but I am not contagious, either.”

Mr. Narrator: “Richard Edward, you are worse than a pair of Tony Fauci flip flops worn under a mask and tie. You can’t be safe if you are not vaccinated. Dr. Tony didn’t say you are safe, so you can’t be. Are you one of those who might have herd immunity? No one in authority talks about ‘you’, the deplorable, ‘recovered-survivors’ tribe. Your people have been ignored. Dude, you either got the jab or you didn’t.”

Then it hits me, I am neither hot nor cold, fish nor fowl. I am once again the forgotten man, one of those who got the disease, recovered and is now simply a hidden statistic. I am stuck in the middle. Deep, or as deep as is possible in my brain, the music rises, a familiar melody surfaces from my pre-mask life.

Trying to make some sense of it all
But I see it makes no sense at all.
Is it cool to go to sleep on the floor?
I don’t think that I can take anymore.

Clowns to the left of me!
Jokers to the right!
Here I am stuck in the middle with you.

Mr. Narrator appears to be correct once again. As much as it pains me, he occasionally makes sense. Yes, I am well and not likely to pass along the dreaded COVID to anyone. Yes, there are antibodies coursing through my body, my bone marrow doing its tireless job 24/7 of keeping me safe.

No, I have no proof to show the store Karens who patrol our aisles of commerce, our passageways of daily life, that I am not a threat.

I don’t want the jab. It’s more dangerous for me than what I have already survived.

So, here I am stuck in the middle of the lingering controversy of the biggest health issue of our decade. The clowns to the left of me insist that I get a vaccination that medicine and science say I most likely don’t need. The jokers to my right appear too afraid to argue the herd immunity case; they don’t want to recognize people like me who have survived and now contribute to the herd’s defense against the disease.

Being stuck anywhere is a drag, but being stuck in the middle is the worst. If you are in the middle like Richard Edward, please leave a comment about the clowns and jokers who are on either side of your life.

— Richard Edward Tracy

The NY Post Editorial Board Lets the Cat Out of the Bag About Biden’s $1.9 Trillion COVID Bill

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Last week, The Wall Street Journal published an op-ed written by Mark Makary, M.D., an epidemiologist and professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. It was entitled, “We’ll Have Herd Immunity by April.” Its lede informed us, “Covid cases have dropped 77% in six weeks. Experts should level with the public about the good news.”

Makary explains that the “natural immunity” of those who have had the virus is “far more common than can be measured by testing.” Specifically:

Testing has been capturing only from 10% to 25% of infections, depending on when during the pandemic someone got the virus. Applying a time-weighted case capture average of 1 in 6.5 to the cumulative 28 million confirmed cases would mean about 55% of Americans have natural immunity.

Now add people getting vaccinated. As of this week, 15% of Americans have received the vaccine, and the figure is rising fast. Former Food and Drug Commissioner Scott Gottlieb estimates 250 million doses will have been delivered to some 150 million people by the end of March.

There is reason to think the country is racing toward an extremely low level of infection. As more people have been infected, most of whom have mild or no symptoms, there are fewer Americans left to be infected. At the current trajectory, I expect Covid will be mostly gone by April, allowing Americans to resume normal life.

“Some medical experts privately agreed with my prediction that there may be very little Covid-19 by April but suggested that I not to talk publicly about herd immunity because people might become complacent and fail to take precautions or might decline the vaccine. But scientists shouldn’t try to manipulate the public by hiding the truth.”

Makary is far from alone in his optimism. The New York Times published the results of a survey of 175 experts in early February who “largely agreed that it was safe for schools to be open to elementary students for full-time and in-person instruction now.”

So why are so many Biden Administration officials, including Biden himself and Dr. Fauci providing such pessimistic scenarios? Fauci is telling us we may be wearing masks through 2022, even those who’ve been vaccinated.

The NY Post Editorial Board explained it in a weekend editorial. Democrats want to pass the $1.9 trillion COVID spending bill. There’s very little in this bloated behemoth that will actually go toward helping everyday Americans cope with pandemic-related problems.

But there’s a whole hell of a lot in the bill that will help Democrats pass projects that have been on their radar for years. $1.9 trillion dollars is a massive amount of money. And it buys a lot of pork.

In an appearance on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” last week, Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) said, “This isn’t a coronavirus bill. This is a left-of-Lenin, neo-socialist wish list. He added that it was “chock-full of spending porn” that had nothing to do with the coronavirus pandemic.

Obviously, if the end of the pandemic is within our grasp, there would be no need to pass it. That’s why Democrats are ignoring the good news.

From The NY Post Editorial Board:

…President Biden, after vowing the nation will have enough vaccine doses by July’s end to vaccinate every American, just said he only hopes for a return to normal by “next Christmas.” Huh?

“I don’t want to overpromise anything here,” “A year from now,” he told CNN, “I think that there’ll be significantly fewer people having to be socially distanced, having to wear a mask.” That’s not avoiding overpromising, as he claimed: It’s outright telling everyone to expect yet another year of economic and social devastation.

Biden’s chief medical adviser, Anthony Fauci, says the worst of the pandemic “might be” behind us. Yet he’s also telling Americans they’ll need to wear masks (maybe two at a time) at least through 2022 — even if they get vaccinated.

This is absurd: Our leaders should be nonstop pushing reluctant Americans to get jabbed so we can all get on with our lives.

[…]

Hospitalizations and deaths keep dropping, even as variants have gained ground: Deaths dropped 20 percent these last two weeks. The UK variant predominates in Britain, Switzerland, Denmark and Israel — and all are also seeing cases dive.

[…]

…while America’s vaccination process has rolled out more slowly than it should’ve, it’s still moving inexorably along.

More than 13 percent of Americans have gotten at least one dose, and the majority are health-care workers or those in nursing homes or other high-risk settings.

Add to that the number of us estimated to have already been infected — 35 percent of Los Angeles County and more than half of Miami-Dade County, for example — and you can see why Johns Hopkins prof Marty Makary predicts we’ll have herd immunity by April.

And the most at-risk Americans have gained immunity. Data scientist Youyang Gu estimates that the number of “susceptible” Americans, those over 45 without immunity, has fallen from a third of the country at the start of the year to 10 percent or fewer now.

Cases in nursing homes fell more than 80 percent from late December to early February. When deaths spiked over the holidays, they actually fell at nursing homes.
[…]

Perhaps it’s just that normalcy makes it too hard to justify the rush to pass a $1.9 trillion “relief” bill filled with Democrats’ pet projects. We’d rather not think cynical politics is behind Biden’s gloom, but it’s hard to see any other reason he’s denying that the pandemic’s end is staring us in the face.

Just as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi refused to pass a COVID relief bill prior to the election for political reasons, the Biden Administration doesn’t want Americans to know that herd immunity and therefore the return to normalcy, is right around the corner.

The pandemic has been such a great gift to the Democratic Party, it will be hard for them to let it go.

 

Elizabeth is the founder and editor of The American Crisis. She is also a contract writer at The Western Journal and a previous contributor to RedState, The Dan Bongino Show, and The Federalist. Her articles have appeared on HotAir, Instapundit, RealClearPolitics, MSN and other sites. Elizabeth is a wife, a mom to three grown children and several beloved golden retrievers, and a grandmother!