Tag Archives: CDC

‘Pandemic of unvaccinated’

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

No one — and I mean not a single sane human being — wants to welcome this latest medical nightmare.

Which is that COVID-19 cases are on the increase, as are hospitalizations and, oh yeah, deaths from the worldwide pandemic.

Who’s responsible for this distressing turn of events? President Biden calls it the “pandemic of the unvaccinated.” That is a mantra repeated late this week by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Dr. Rachelle Wallensky.

Think of this for just a moment.

Those who dismiss the vaccines, who refuse to take them, who believe the foolishness being spread out there (that they turn bodies in magnets and plant the spores of Satan into our skulls) have contributed to this horrible new wave of infection and death.

CDC officials report the greatest spike in infection/hospitalization/death come from those parts of the country with the lowest vaccination rates. Those happen to be mostly in the southern part of the nation. Hmm. What does one make of that? Is there a political component to this horrible news? I happen to believe there is, but I’ll save that for another blog post.

Today I am concerned about my own family. Almost all of us are full vaccinated. The only one who hasn’t received the vaccine is our granddaughter, our 8-year-old. She will get hers soon.

But what does this mean for those of us who have been vaccinated? I keep hearing reports of fully vaccinated Americans being stricken by that delta variant COVID-19 strain that is knocking the stuffing out of us.

My wife and had not jettisoned our masks. We had them handy, partly for occasions such as what we are discussing today: a resurgence of the virus.

With that said, we’re donning our masks once again when we venture into public places with other human beings, many of whom do not bother with the masks. I don’t wish them ill, but I do wish they would follow our lead — my bride and me — and cover their faces while they mingle with the rest of us.

Oh, and the vaccines still are safe. They still are effective. They still are preventing needless headache, heartache and hysteria.

If only we all would heed the advice of highly trained medical professionals to get vaccinated.

Delighted with ruling, however …

By John Kanelis / johnkanelils_92@hotmail.com

As delighted as I am with the new masking and social distance guidelines from the federal government, I want to offer a word of caution.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says we no longer need to wear masks if we are fully vaccinated. OK, we qualify for that; we are vaccinated and we have the documentation to prove it.

I do not know what the guy next to me at the grocery store has done. Nor do I know what so-and-so waiting in line to buy a burrito at the convenience store has done.

My hope today is that we do not see a dramatic reduction in mask wearing as we go about our day.

We’ve been following the rules in our North Texas community and for that I am glad and delighted that my neighbors haven’t flouted the advice given to us by CDC, President Biden and his senior medical team.

The COVID pandemic is still out there. It’s lurking. I intend to wear masks for until we get the all clear signal from those in the know.

Join me, eh?

Mask mandate lifted? OK, but …

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

President Biden has sort of spiked a proverbial football on the basis of a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ruling related to the killer pandemic that has put the entire planet on edge.

The CDC says fully vaccinated Americans need not wear masks.

Hoo-ray! Now does that mean we’re back to normal life? That all that worry and angst is a thing of the past? That we should toss all caution into the crapper?

Nope. Not going to go there.

Biden calls new mask guidance a ‘great milestone’ | TheHill

It means that fully vaccinated Americans — such as my immediate family (except for my younger than 12-year-old granddaughter) — would be wise to exercise some restraint and good judgment when mingling with crowds of people they do not know. Our granddaughter’s vaccination is approaching rapidly and for that I will be grateful beyond all measure.

That will continue to be our mantra as we regain our footing en route to life as we once knew it.

President Biden calls it a milestone. He is taking a victory lap of sorts, although he has been discreet in his outward behavior as we have cleared various mile posts along the way — much to his great credit.

“I think it’s a great milestone, a great day. It’s been made possible by the extraordinary success we have had in vaccinating so many Americans, so quickly,” Biden added.

OK. I’m all in with the new guidelines. I wish I could be totally serene about our collective future and our national health. I am not yet there, given all the “variants” and the crises that are erupting in places like India, Brazil and parts of Europe.

However, I am heartened by the progress the nation is making in eradicating this hideous killer.


Thanks, doc; I’ll wait

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Dr. Anthony Fauci says that increased vaccination rates mean that we can move around indoors with relaxed mask and social-distancing requirements.

Well, I gotta say it: No thanks, doc. I’m going to keep wearing my mask and keeping my distance from strangers until we get the “all clear!” from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Food and Drug Administration and, well, from you.

I get that we want to return to normal life as we knew the meaning of the term. However, I am going to keep my mask handy, ready to slip on when I go to indoor locations populated by complete strangers.

Dr. Fauci is President Biden’s senior medical adviser. He is a brilliant epidemiologist, the leading national and arguably the top worldwide expert on infectious disease. If he says it’s OK for businesses and local governments to relax their precautions, I’ll accept that.

However, I am not going to take the bait just yet.

We have a ways to go before we can declare the COVID virus a goner. Until we do that, I’ll keep wearing my mask.

But … thanks for the words of encouragement.

Biden masks up … good!

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

President Biden appears to have made a decision that has some folks wondering … what’s the point?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has loosened its recommendations for mask wearing while the COVID pandemic continues to infect, sicken and kill Americans.

What has been Biden’s response? He and first lady Jill Biden continue to mask up. As The Hill newspaper reported, the first couple was spotted walking toward Marine One with no one else nearby; both of them wore masks.

I believe President Biden is intent on sending a message, which is to employ extreme caution even as infection, hospitalization and death rates continue to decline.

According to The Hill: “I actually think it would do so much good for the president to be modeling at this point the really critical times when people should be wearing a mask, and letting people know here is the benefit of the vaccine: You don’t need to be wearing a mask during these other times,” said Leana Wen, an emergency physician and former health commissioner for the city of Baltimore.

Biden keeps masking despite updated guidance | TheHill

Yes, it is important for the president of the United States to serve as a role model on these matters which, I hasten to point out, can determine whether we live or die.

Compare the current president’s commitment to this role-playing to his immediate predecessor’s flouting of the CDC guidelines — while the pandemic was accelerating at an alarming rate.

Donald Trump refused for months even to acknowledge publicly the severity of the pandemic. He wouldn’t be seen with a mask, offering some ridiculous assertion that it didn’t dignify the office he occupied. The Trumpkin Corps followed their guy’s lead on that specious notion.

We have a new man in the nation’s most exalted office. President Biden has chosen to set a different kind of example. Frankly, it is an example I do not mind watching our president and the first lady setting an example worth emulating.

The stakes remain too high and the consequences are too grim to fall back on phony and false denials.

COVID: still worrisome

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

President Biden’s latest amendment to the COVID mandates he has sought has produced a cause for worry.

Biden now echoes a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendation that says it’s OK to go without masks when we’re outdoors. The CDC also cautions against mingling with large crowds of people.

The worry? It comes because I fear too many of us will ignore the caveat laid out there by CDC and the president.

Biden and his medical team are trumpeting the vaccines — all three of them — that are being injected into human bodies. About 30 percent of the U.S. population has received at least one dose. West Virginia is now offering cold cash money to residents who are resisting the inoculation. I get that we are turning the proverbial corner against the killer pandemic.

Dang it, though! We need to continue to exercise what’s been called “an abundance of caution.”

My wife and I are fully vaccinated. So are our son and daughter-in-law. Their two older sons are as well. Our granddaughter is not yet … but she’s a young’n. We feel comfortable going without masks when we’re in their presence, as we do with our older son who lives elsewhere but who is about to receive his second vaccine.

I just don’t want there to be some mad rush toward “normal living” by those who have grown tired of the masks, of the social distancing, of the incessant hand-washing.

We all can see that so-called light at the end of it all, but we still have some distance to go.

Masks are … everywhere!

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

As long as we’re still politicizing the issue of mask-wearing and keeping our distance from each other, I feel the need to offer a good word about what I am seeing in my neighborhood.

Look, I live in a conservative, Republican-leaning county in North Texas. They make jokes about our part of the nation, about how Texans don’t like being dictated to by the federal government.

OK, as long as we’re clear about that, I want to say that I continue to be pleasantly surprised/impressed that so many folks I see in the city of Princeton where I live still wearing their masks, still observing social distancing, still doing the things that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tells us to do to avoid getting sickened — or killed — by the COVID-19 virus.

Yep, I see it when I venture out among the masses. At the grocery store. At the convenience store. When I fill my truck with fuel. When I stop for an occasional egg roll at the truck stop west of us on the highway toward McKinney.

I find myself wondering what in the world happened to that myth that Texans bristle at government mandates. Perhaps it’s because it is a myth. That it doesn’t really exist. That we’re just as concerned as other Americans that the danger of the virus is real and that we need to do what we can to protect ourselves.

Imagine that, eh?

‘Impending doom’?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Dr. Rochelle Walensky is frightened at what she calls “impending doom” over the future of our nation’s fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

I think that if the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention worries about the virus, well, I think we all should worry, too. So, with that I’ll declare that I share Dr. Walensky’s concern.

President Biden is asking governors to reinstitute mask mandates. He is urging Americans to keep wearing masks. To keep practicing social distancing. To not congregate among strangers.

Yes, the nation has seen a decline in positive tests, in hospitalizations and in deaths from the pandemic. However, it appears that too many of us ae letting down our guard against the virus. It’s still killing Americans!

The Hill reports: “I’m going to lose the script, and I’m going to reflect on the recurring feeling I have of impending doom. We have so much to look forward to so much promise and potential of where we are, and so much reason for hope. But right now I’m scared,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said during a White House briefing Monday. 

Spare me the criticism that she’s a doomsayer. That she’s crying “wolf!” where none exists. That she, in the words of the immediate ex-president, is an “idiot,” which is the label he hung on Dr. Anthony Fauci.

CDC director warns of ‘impending doom’ on potential new COVID-19 surge | TheHill

European Union nations are locking down again. Do we really want to join them? Do we dare allow this virus to seize control of our lives?

I am becoming increasingly concerned, too, that too many states might have let their guard down prematurely. Yes, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, that’s you, too!

I have no solutions to this, other than to echo Dr. Walensky’s concern. If she is worried about where we might be moving, then so am I.

CDC offers ‘good news’

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

This is “good news” coming from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention?

I’ll be candid: The news makes me a bit nervous.

The CDC says it’s OK for those of us who are “fully vaccinated” to meet with others who also are fully vaccinated against the COVID virus without any restrictions. You know what I mean: no masks, no imperative to practice social distancing, those kinds of things.

Maybe I should just accept CDC director Dr. Rachelle Walensky’s word for it, that it’s safe to hug on others who’ve been totally vaccinated. Then again, I remain worried about just how do we know with any certainty that others have received all the shots they need to declare themselves inoculated against the killer virus.

The media are heralding this news as further evidence that we are turning the corner against the pandemic. I hope we are and, yes, I believe we are in the midst of turning that corner.

I just can’t shake the heebie-jeebies I feel when I hear this kind of reporting out of the CDC.

For now I believe I am going to continue to keep my distance from a good bit of American society.

Forget how they look … masks save lives

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

When I watch the news and notice President Biden making public appearances while wearing a mask, I cannot help but think of something his predecessor said about mask-wearing in light of the killer pandemic.

Donald J. Trump dismissed the idea of wearing a mask, saying something about how unbecoming it would be for the president of the United States to wear such a thing. He was worried about appearance.

Hmm. So, Trump exits the political stage — and not a moment too soon — and gives way to President Biden, who doesn’t appear to be worried about such mundane matters. Biden wears a mask. He has asked all Americans to wear masks for at least the first 100 days of his administration. My wife and I have heard his request and are following suit.

I am not going to suggest that we are doing it out of “patriotism,” which Biden insists ought to be the driving force. We are seeking to protect ourselves and those with whom we come in contact. Wearing a mask is not a big deal. Indeed, reaching for a mask before I enter a grocery store is becoming more “normal” than not reaching for it.

All of this is my way of welcoming the new outlook and the leadership that is coming from the White House.

Make no mistake, too, that President Biden is willing and able to talk candidly with us about the savage toll the pandemic is exacting on us. His predecessor routinely sought to downplay that, too. Amazing.

Watching the president of the United States conduct matters of state while wearing a mask only highlights the foolishness that came from his predecessor, an individual who was more concerned about appearances than he ever was about saving lives.