A new focus of news coverage: Are there double standards for Covid protocols?

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Monday was a day stuffed with pandemic dissonance. Tuesday most likely will probably be, too.

On the identical day we discovered a couple of main step ahead for public well being — Pfizer saying that its Covid-19 vaccine is secure for teenagers — we additionally heard a couple of horrible mile marker of dying. “Regardless of all of the scientific and medical advances of the previous 103 years,” CNN’s Holly Yan wrote, this pandemic “has now killed extra People than the 1918 flu pandemic did.”

Different information retailers revealed related tales when the Johns Hopkins dashboard surpassed the 675,000-dead mark. Some websites illustrated the information with historic pictures from 1918.

When the authorities say the US is averaging roughly 2,000 Covid deaths a day, but the identical sources affirm that totally vaccinated People are nicely shielded from extreme sickness, we wind up in a day by day state of pandemic dissonance. It is a peculiar kind of stress that exists when photos of jam-packed stadiums seem in social media feeds subsequent to accounts of overwhelmed hospitals. I see it on my feed when a breakthrough just like the Pfizer information occurs: Individuals who have been “again to regular” for months cannot consider others are nonetheless taking stringent precautions — and visa versa.

This stress is especially acute when we do not have the right context or knowledge to guage the circumstances we’re in. Do this: Search for your individual neighborhood’s Covid knowledge dashboard. Attempt to learn how many latest hospitalizations and deaths are amongst vaccinated adults versus unvaxxed. I attempted this for my neighborhood and failed.

Occasionally, federal and state officers present snapshots that present the overwhelming majority of the struggling and dying is occurring among the many unvaxxed, i.e. adults who’ve chosen to not shield themselves. However the knowledge isn’t obtainable in a constant, searchable method. It is piecemeal at greatest. So we’re left assuming, left guessing, left making danger assessments with out dependable knowledge, and that results in much more pandemic dissonance…

Comply with the foundations or change the foundations

Double-standard-style habits by Democratic politicians and vaguely outlined members of “the elite” is a day by day theme of right-wing media protection. Here is an instance from Monday’s Every day Caller homepage: “Elites attend galas and award exhibits unmasked whereas servants need to cowl their faces.”

I perceive all of the context for these scenes, however the pictures nonetheless make me squeamish. This could not simply be a “right-wing media” difficulty. It is an “everyone with widespread sense” difficulty. CNN’s Brianna Keilar, to her credit score, referred to as out an instance of hypocrisy on Monday’s “New Day.” She confirmed the video of SF mayor London Breed partying, maskless, with a completely vaccinated crowd. “The mayor of a serious American metropolis is not complying together with her personal well being division’s well being steering,” Keilar mentioned.

Breed, on protection, informed reporters “we do not want the enjoyable police” to “micromanage” masks carrying so long as the inhabitants is vaccinated. I occur to agree — however that is not town’s place or the CDC’s place. These politicians ought to observe the foundations or change the foundations. If they do not have the authority, they need to strain those that do. If it is too sophisticated, they need to push to make it less complicated. Restrictions, guidelines and proposals on this part of the pandemic should not be one-size-fits-all. They need to be personalized to particular locales and positivity charges and tolerance ranges. However they aren’t. Because the “guidelines” make much less and fewer sense, they usually’re not enforced equally or in any respect, they’re going to be adopted much less and fewer, if in any respect…

LA County says Emmys did not violate masks mandate

Oliver Darcy writes: “There was plenty of dialogue over the previous 24 hours over whether or not those that attended the Emmy Awards violated LA County’s masks mandate, which requires everybody, no matter vaccination standing, to don a face masking. Nicely, the quick reply is, no, it apparently didn’t. A spokesperson for the LA County of Public Well being informed me that ‘exceptions are made for movie, tv, and music productions’ since ‘extra security modifications’ are made for such occasions. The division defined that everybody on the Emmys was thought-about a performer and that ‘all individuals showing on or within the viewers of the Emmy Award Present had been totally vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19.’ And the division added that the Emmys reached out ‘upfront to share their security protocols,’ which they mentioned ‘exceeded the baseline necessities.’ Read the full statement here…”

The best’s narratives

There may be, after all, an unhinged right-wing media that has little interest in context. Take this banner on Tucker Carlson’s present on Monday: “CELEBRITIES ARE APPARENTLY EXEMPTED FROM ALL RULES.” There’s additionally this headline on the American Thinker web site: “COVID has turned leftists into child-abusers” as a consequence of masks mandates for toddlers. A few of the commentary about vaccine mandates has been equally kooky.
However there are extra persuasive arguments being superior in different corners. I seen Washington Examiner editor Seth Mandel tweet about “watching 4 12 months previous youngsters play soccer in masks,” and I believed, nicely that is senseless. My 4 12 months previous went to soccer class on Saturday and there was not a masks in sight. The virus menace is roughly the identical in each of our cities. So, who’s making these differing choices and why? It is easy to see how a lot social belief has been misplaced all through this ordeal. And if we ignore that actuality, much more belief will probably be misplaced…

Notes and quotes concerning the vaccine wars

— Two youngsters who just lately misplaced their 45-year-old father to Covid-19 spoke out on CNN’s “New Day” and blamed Tucker Carlson for among the vaccine misinfo he believed… (Mediaite)
— Carlson’s latest rant, certain to be absorbed all through the GOP, is concerning the US army’s get-vaxxed coverage: “The purpose of obligatory vaccination is to establish the honest Christians within the ranks, the freethinkers, the lads with excessive testosterone ranges, and anyone else who would not love Joe Biden and make them depart instantly. It is a takeover of the U.S. army!” (Twitter)
— Shawn Boburg and Jon Swaine write about Thomas Renz, a “as soon as little-known lawyer” whose rise “exhibits how vaccine misinformation can gasoline fundraising and far-right movie star…” (WaPo)
— Alongside the identical traces, Kiera Butler reviews on how “a wildly well-liked app for church buildings is now an anti-vax hotbed…” (Mom Jones)
— Matt Gertz writes about how far-right Breitbart author John Nolte is “making an attempt to get his readers vaccinated” by means of a “improper and loopy” argument… (MMFA)
— “Anti-vax hypocrite Eric Clapton breaks personal vow, performs venue with vaccine mandate…” (Rolling Stone)

Six guidelines…

Katherine J. Wu, Ed Yong, and Sarah Zhang’s latest story for The Atlantic is titled “Six guidelines that may outline our second pandemic winter.” One of many many standout quotes: “The extra unvaccinated individuals are concentrated, the extra simply the virus can discover its subsequent sufferer…”

CNN’s RTO replace

Oliver Darcy writes: “No shock right here. CNN on Monday grew to become the most recent firm to push its full return-to-office date again to 2022. Community boss Jeff Zucker introduced the information to workers in a memo, saying execs had ‘come to the conclusion {that a} full return to the workplace in October doesn’t really feel proper.’ Zucker, who talked about the Delta variant’s rise in Atlanta the place CNN HQ is, mentioned the brand new goal date is January 10. However he inspired workers to begin coming into the workplace now, one thing that many staffers have already been doing. ‘I feel you may discover … it’s really fairly nice,’ Zucker mentioned, including, ‘The transition doesn’t start in January. It begins now…'”

>> This piece in The Atlantic is a crucial reminder that “earn a living from home” isn’t the norm: Solely 13.4% of People “labored from house” in August…

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