The pandemic is just not over but

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Delta hit in the US now spans from cases to hospital admissions, 13 states with delta prevalence> 65% now with hospital admissions increase ≥ 25% in the past 14 days pic.twitter.com/shuWiAyBxQ

– Eric Topol (@EricTopol) July 11, 2021

Erika Edwards / NBCNews:

Unvaccinated hospital patients say they regret not getting the vaccination

One and a half years after the start of the pandemic, low vaccination rates and the rise in the delta variant threaten to paralyze some hospital systems.

Dr. To describe Ryan Dare as frustrated would be a gross understatement.

Dare and his colleagues at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences at Little Rock are facing an increase in extremely sick Covid-19 patients – one that is “almost 100 percent preventable”.

That’s because virtually all of their patients are unvaccinated. And now they wish they’d gotten the shots when they got the chance.

Josephine Harvey / HuffPost:

“Pandemic Is Not Over”: Florida Republican Describes Staggering COVID-19 Ordeal

James Ring, president of the Lakeland GOP, said he has not taken the time to get vaccinated.

A Republican official from Florida has urged people to get vaccinated and wear masks after falling seriously ill with COVID-19 last month and fearing he would “not leave the hospital alive.”

James Ring, president of the Lakeland, Florida Republican Party, said he had become complacent about thinking of wearing a mask and had not gotten around to getting vaccinated.

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The CDC has released new guidelines urging schools to fully reopen in the fall, even if they cannot take all the steps recommended by the agency to help contain the spread of the coronavirus https://t.co/AmoWnmj2RH

– Apoorva Mandavilli (@apoorva_nyc) July 9, 2021

Maya Wiley / WaPo:

I lost the mayor’s race in NYC, but women and minorities win by ranking

As a black woman and civil rights activist, I had many emotional experiences during the campaign that has just ended. But my brief encounter in Harlem was one of the most humiliating. I had a real chance of becoming the 110th mayor of a city that had 109 elected men, and only one of them was a Person of Color. I got in on an unprecedented race that took place during a pandemic, with more than 30 candidates, a shortened election cycle, and less notoriety than other top candidates third. But Rankings Voting (RCV) was neither an explanation of the outcome nor an obstacle to black women’s future victory.

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One of the more insightful things I’ve read about the Washington Press Corps and what it values. The topic ranges from the insane high of Trump to the level-headed professionalism of the White House of Biden.

They reveal themselves in their commentary on this. https://t.co/sGwit7LaX7

– Jay Rosen (@jayrosen_nyu) July 9, 2021

Julia Ioffe / Tomorrow is getting worse (newsletter):

The agony and ecstasy of Trump reporters after Trump’s fall

However, the prominent White House reporter admitted an occasional sense of loss. “I loved covering Trump,” they said. “It was a great and fascinating story. It wasn’t just about him; it was about his movement and the institutions and America. The story has always been so dramatic and had these larger than life characters. The stakes often felt very high. I also like covering Biden, but it just doesn’t feel that dramatic. It’s a slightly better work-life balance, and I don’t wake up at 5:30 a.m. wondering what the president has tweeted and what direction it’s going to take my day. It was exciting and exhilarating, but it’s damn exhausting. ”

Some were relieved for the country’s sake. “I am not one of the camp that Trump misses,” said the radio reporter. “I get the feeling, but you also have to take a step back and see what happened on January 6th. This is not a fun game we play on Twitter, it is serious. It’s bigger than you and your career. “

But many feel a yawning sense of emptiness and disappointment with what the declining Trump tide has left behind. “I think everyone probably misses the ease of having so many willing leakers,” said the young White House reporter. “You thought you were better than you were. It made you think you were a really good reporter, but really, didn’t you? I think we had an exaggerated sense of our abilities and it was all a betrayal. Now everyone is exposed and everyone is shit where are the great stories? They don’t exist. I can’t remember the last time I read a great story that really revealed something about the Biden White House. “

Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt / Atlantic:

The greatest threat to democracy is that the GOP will steal the next election

As long as the Republican Party does not commit itself again to play by the democratic rules of the game, American democracy remains in danger.

As we argued in As democracies die, our constitutional system is based heavily on forbearance. Whether filibuster, government funding, impeachment or judicial nominations, our system of checks and balances works best when politicians on both sides of the aisle use their institutional prerogatives with restraint. In other words, when they avoid applying the letter of the law in a way that is contrary to the spirit of the law – what is sometimes referred to as a constitutional hardball. When modern democracies die, they usually do so through constitutional hardball. The main attackers of democracy today are not generals or armed revolutionaries, but rather politicians – Hugo Chávez, Vladimir Putin, Viktor Orbán, Recep Tayyip Erdoan – who, behind a carefully crafted coat of legality and constitutionality, gouge the substance of democracy.

This is exactly what could happen in the next US presidential campaign. Elections require leniency. For democratic elections, all adult citizens must equally be able to cast their votes and have those votes counted. It is amazingly easy to use the letter of the law to violate the spirit of that principle. Voting officials can legally discard a large number of ballot papers due to the smallest of formalities (e.g. the oval on the ballot paper is not completely penciled or the ballot paper for the postal vote contains a typing or spelling error). The widespread elimination of ballot papers corresponds to the letter of the law, but is inherently anti-democratic as it denies many voters the right to vote. Crucially, if hardball criteria are applied unevenly, they can reject an election so that many ballots are disqualified in one party’s stronghold but not in others.

Lisa Rosenbaum / NEJM:

No cure without care – soothing science skepticism

While many people’s basic heuristic of health-related decisions is to trust medical and scientific experts, the hesitation of vaccines reminds us of the many competing forces that influence people’s intuitions about health, be they religious, political, historical, or identity-based. To be clear, some of these forces are identifiable and should be addressed; The contribution of historical abuse and persistent systemic racism to vaccination reluctance in minority communities is a notable example. But in order to understand people who simply feel that Covid vaccines should be avoided, identifying specific heuristics is less important than just realizing the limits of data in shaping truth perception. “We do not make our decisions about what is true on the basis of an analysis of evidence,” emphasized Levinovitz. “It’s a profound misunderstanding of how people understand reality.”

While Covid has not changed human nature, its devastating consequences have made clear the gap between what is true and what people believe. A memorable low point for me was reading a South Dakota nurse’s description of patients who were seriously ill with Covid but continued to insist that the virus was a joke until they were intubated If you can deny the existence of a disease while you die from it, what hope is there for science to convince people who do not have the disease to take it seriously enough to get vaccinated?

Not much for part of the population. But while people who aggressively deny science and disregard the health of others play a huge role in our minds, there are likely many more who are simply confused and no longer know who or what to trust. Undoubtedly, the current skepticism about vaccines is due in part to factors specific to this moment and these particular vaccines. But to the extent that hesitation also reflects deeper, longer-lasting ruptures in our relationship with the public, its exploration offers an opportunity to improve patient care in ways that go well beyond the pandemic.

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This seems really extreme, and a harbinger of what’s to come: veteran (and permanent) high school teacher and baseball coach who was fired from school after assigning a Ta-Nehisi Coates essay and poem about white privilege . https://t.co/3tFpH4g7gl

– Don Moynihan (@donmoyn) July 9, 2021

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