Does the coronavirus merit investment, or personal, concern or consideration?

I am normally an easy going guy that doesn’t get angry or upset easily. For instance, I was furloughed more than half the year last year by an employer that received millions of dollars in pandemic relief funds. I didn’t get very angry about that. I’m a big boy and and I knew I’d be fine - and that turned out to be correct. My only regret was worrying at all and not enjoying my time off as much as I should have.

But now that the government is starting to put out the mask rules for school children, it’s taking an effort to contain my anger. And I am fortunate compared to what most parents went through and will be going through.

My son is 4 and will turn 5 right before the 2021-2022 school year starts. We were already planning on putting him in private junior kindergarten during his first year of public school kindergarten eligibility before the pandemic even started. Had he gone into kindergarten at 5, he would have been one of the youngest kids in his class and a lot of data points to that making it particularly difficult, especially for boys. The pandemic just reinforced that decision as many more parents than usual held their children back from starting public school last year if they could. This year’s kindergarten class is likely to be the oldest average age kindergarten class ever, so he would have been even further behind his peers.

Last school year, my state used some common sense when it came to masking kids. They realized how silly the CDC’s recommendation of 2 and older was and instead, the Virginia Department of Social Services (which regulates private daycares and preschools) recommended kids 5 and older wear masks. All businesses and indoor facilities I took my son to over the past year and half have also used common sense and I was never once asked to put a mask on him. My son has essentially never donned a mask. I was so happy he didn’t have to wear a mask in preschool. My son had to have speech therapy early on and his speech right now is unbelievably improved. I don’t know how that would have been possible had he and his classmates been forced to wear masks last year. Not to mention all the interpersonal communication that kids are learning at this age, most of which is non-verbal facial expressions. I’m sure some of his peers from other parts of the country that required masks for his age are going to be showing the effects of a year plus of stunted development for quite some time.

But back to current day, thanks to the idiocy of government officials, a child who has never once worn a mask, and was in preschool with unmasked kids all last school year, during some of the worst parts of the pandemic, will now, magically because he is 1 year older, be considered a spreader and will have to wear a mask in junior kindergarten private preschool. In context, this is going to happen even though every adult that he could possibly come in contact with has been offered a vaccine (and likely has been vaccinated), and pretty much no one in public in my area wears a mask anymore. We’ve had over a year of experience at this point and the states with relaxed or no mask mandate for kids haven’t shown a significantly higher rate of infection of death than the states with strict mask mandates. I’ve never been a conspiracy theorist, but I’m really starting to wonder if there is something behind the desire to control our population the way so many in political power are doing right now contrary to so much evidence out there.

I don’t normally get angry or call people names, but if you are one of these people that want my kid, and kids like him, wearing a mask in school this upcoming school year, you are the problem and I think you are an a**hole. If it were a legitimate way of settling our differences, I would gladly physically fight you. There are a heck of a lot of parents out there that feel as strongly as me about this, and a LOT of them do not have the same principles that would limit how far they would go for their kids. If you people aren’t prepared for a knock down drag out fight with those you disagree, you are making a big miscalculation. I have never been vindictive. But when this is all over and you people are in the minority again, you deserved to be punished for what you’ve done to our (and your) children.

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Trying harder to look guilty, Beijing tells the WHO to stuff it for their second viral origin probe.

Zeng says he is “surprised” to see research into the lab leak theory, which was initially dismissed by the WHO as highly unlikely, included as a reason for a second hoped-for visit by a WHO team to Wuhan.

“In some aspects, the WHO’s plan for the next phase of investigation of the coronavirus origin doesn’t respect common sense, and it’s against science. It’s impossible for us to accept such a plan,” he said.

Liang Wannian, a senior scientist and the representative for the Chinese side of the WHO’s joint investigation, said during the briefing that, instead of returning to China, the team of experts should prioritize the “very likely” possibility that coronavirus originated in animals, and was later transferred to humans.

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It’s called redshirting, and from what I’ve read & listened to, there is no definitive proof that being the youngest makes it any more difficult. Being the oldest can also have negative effects. The decision should be based on the child’s maturity (mental, physical, social), not age. Except when there’s a pandemic with lots of unknowns, I suppose – I would have held mine back last year too, regardless of maturity, but not this year.

Are there no exceptions to the mask requirements? I’m sure you’ve considered this already, but maybe a note from his therapist (or pediatrician, since speech therapists are not MDs) could excuse him?

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Our state kings seem to be releasing their edicts now, but I haven’t heard anything from our school yet, so I haven’t looked into what they would need as far as a waiver is concerned. I hate putting them in that position, they’re just trying to follow the rules and stay out of trouble But even if we did go that route it doesn’t help with the class as a whole though.

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Advocating for your child is your job as a parent. Their job is to know the rules and the exceptions. I wouldn’t feel too bad about this :slight_smile:

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The WhO were just showing their ignorance. They should have said that it was highly likely to be a Chinese made virus. After the Chicoms stamped their feet and donated a half trillion, the WHO could then have said it was almost certainly not man-made, and if it were, it was most definitely not Chinese.

But no, they blew their opportunity, and are now trying to backdoor their way into the Chinese payoff. What idiots!

In physics, the cross section is a measure of the probability that a specific process will take place when some kind of radiant excitation intersects a localized phenomenon.

When I performed a lab experiment called “collision cross section” in physics lab many decades ago I never dreamed it would impact my pandemic thinking today. But it has.

In addition, it has been WAY too long since I have posted a pandemic food shopping update here . . . and the two are connected. You see:

Regardless I’ve been vaccinated for 3 1/2 months I remain very cautious where COVID-19 is concerned. There is a wonderful opportunity to encounter, or collide with, the virus at your local supermarket where persons of unknowable vaccination status roam freely, many these days not even masked. So how to reduce the probability of such collisions?

First, the above notwithstanding, I have cast aside Instacart . . . at least for now. If you’re willing to enter a supermarket at all, and I am now, you don’t need Instacart in my opinion.

But willingness to shop in person does not translate into a desire to dawdle in an environment having enhanced virus collision potential. Plan ahead, take a list, wear a good mask, be there when the supermarket opens and is cleanest (including the air), and get out as quickly as possible is what makes sense to me. Hence:

Facilitation of the above is provided now, for me, by walmart.com. They will ship me any number of food items thereby reducing time I would otherwise spend buying those same items in the supermarket. It’s not most important or determinative. But I’m also finding the walmart.com prices often to be lower than supermarket prices. So what’s not to like?

Walmart.com shipping damage, that’s what. It’s an omnipresent danger of doing business with them. You never know until you open your food shipment whether or not everything will be intact. But to me possible shipping damage is worth the hassle to avoid spending extra time in a supermarket to purchase the same items.

Bottom line pandemic food shopping for me is a whole lot better now than it was pre-vaccination, when I did not enter supermarkets at all and had to rely on Instacart.

:smile: Says who? :smile: It’s just a joke … hence the multiple smilies.

What the He-double-hockeysticks is the point of the vaccination?

I don’t doubt this, but is there no danger of shipping damage from other purveyors? I think buying semi-fresh food from anyone who is going to ship it is a crapshoot, at best.

If this is just an update to say that you are now shopping in person, where you were too afraid to do it before your vaccination, please ignore my comments. :-(>

A quick call or chat will get damaged items resolved. And a lot of times get you a discount code for your next order.

Surely your local Walmart offers free grocery pickup, where you order online and they bring your order to your car once you get to the store? Same concept as having stuff shipped, but without the rough handling by Fedex. And more items are eligible than with just online order/shipping.

Hey, he’s being consistent, and it’s actually quite prudent. A vaccinated person has no clue how effective the vaccinations was in him (even if it is very effective in general). The odds of running into an infection while walking through the grocery store was pretty low to begin with, and even lower now, but there’s still a risk he is vulnerable should he be exposed.

I really like and respect Shin for how he’s taken responsibility for his own health, rather than constantly bitch about how everyone else should be acting to accommodate his own convenience.

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While I appreciate your most kind comment, above, I must mention that my nearest “local Walmart” is twenty miles distant from my home. To make matters worse, it is located in a town I have no other reason to visit. Have not been there for several years.

Yes, I do have other Walmart brick and mortar stores “nearby”. Both are roughly thirty miles away. One of those stores actually shipped me my most recent walmart.com order, placed online and shipped to me via FedEx.

I (incorrectly) assumed when you mentioned being more willing to go into a store to shop, Walmart was included in that willingness. I’m sure there are other stores closer who also offer the same online order/curbside pickup service, but I’m now understanding your choice is price verses avoiding shipping damage.

But the point remains true that a quick chat with walmart.com will resolve most any shipping damage issues.

It’s a multi-tiered analysis:

First, it’s an effort to avoid contracting COVID-19 at all. From the jump I have believed COVID-19 is the virus from hell. It is worth my effort to avoid it. However, failing that:

Second, it’s an effort to avoid serious illness should the misfortune of contracting the virus materialize. Vaccinated people, should a breakthrough infection happen, nevertheless have a measure of protection . . . because we have the antibodies, and the primed T cells, which aid the body in fighting the virus.

Third, it’s an effort to minimize chances of hospitalization, and also of death.

Finally, it’s an effort to be a responsible member of society by not endangering others. Unvaccinated persons, as we learned at the outset of this pandemic, can act as unknowing carriers of the virus. I do not relish the notion of harming other people.

So bottom line, with all those reasons rather self evident, vaccination was a no brainer. Except:

As I wrote in my earlier post, it all comes down to evaluation of probabilistic considerations. And that is a tough assignment for some individuals. Let’s face fact: the various vaccines all carry a very small measure of risk. Much of that risk can be mitigated by careful and thoughtful vaccine selection. The remaining risk is vanishingly small, and is overwhelmed by risk of contracting the virus itself.

It is heartbreaking, for me, to witness what this horrible virus continues even now to do to persons who prioritize avoidance of the vaccines. And that goes double when it is younger people who become seriously ill or even lose their lives.

Oh, sure. Absolutely. I’m placing most of my orders now with walmart.com. But I have given a few orders in the past to target.com. It’s the same damage risk. Of course if you telephone them they will make everything right. But I’m a fairly busy person and straightening things out like that can be time consuming. I prefer to hope for the best and make do if at all possible with whatever I receive.

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At the present time here in the USA, right now today, roughly 1750 persons are perishing from COVID-19 per week.

These are not mere hospitalizations. These are deaths.

Obviously the number of new cases/week and the number of hospitalizations/week is higher. But many of those people end up recovering, albeit likely following fulfillment of their role as virus spreaders.

I wonder how many people hear this, and think it is in fact higher than the 1,000 per day last summer? Reporting only 250/day would send the message that we are on the tail of this…

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Some credit to the Washington Post for taking the WHO to task for the various errors and inconsistencies in their heavily Chinese government edited and approved report on the origins of the Wuhan virus.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/covid-wuhan-outbreak-who/2021/07/15/51e7e8a6-e2c6-11eb-88c5-4fd6382c47cb_story.html

The WHO has since admitted to various inadvertent “editing errors”, involving things like who the first known case was (earlier than the report first claimed) and how close they were to a particular Wuhan Institute (closer than originally claimed). Honest mistakes I’m sure, and for which we are getting good value for our generously resumed WHO contributions as US taxpayers.

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I agree with all of your post, but especially the quoted line above.

I was also, not very elegantly (or apparently clearly), trying to point out that the vax was sold as the answer to our covid problems. It obviously is not.

Thank you very much for taking the time to clearly, even to me, explain your rationale. I think it makes perfect sense for you to follow it, as you are obviously most comfortable with the logic and thought behind it.

I only have one tiny issue with the rest of your post.

To me, it’s a small measure of known/published risk.

Much of that known/published risk

The remaining known/published risk is vanishingly small.

As mentioned before, I am probably the poster child for someone who should not get covid - comorbidities abound. I had almost convinced myself to get the vax in a 2 or 3 years, but am now much less inclined. If I had already gotten it, I would probably have buyers remorse. By the time they decide to force it down people’s throats, I should be able to prove antibodies are already present … or I’ll be dead.

Oh, lest anyone think there is a death wish lurking here, I have taken steps in the last couple of months to mitigate exposure. I now limit myself to interacting with less than 50 people per week.

Broad recap on research on the India / Delta variant is suggesting several things -

  • viral loads are much higher than before (increasing transmission)
  • related, symptoms arrive faster than before, after 3-5 days instead of more like 6
  • vaccinated people can still get sick and show symptoms more often (maybe only 40-60% protection, hard to tell?; protection is still good against serious health outcomes)
  • vaccinated people can spread the virus to others, and while this is at a somewhat reduced rate, the baseline rate is very high
  • symptoms in vaccinated people are cold-like (runny nose, sneezing) not covid-like (fever, cough)

I suspect the mask mandates in light of these are justified, even for vaccinated people, although so far the CDC is leaving that to each location.

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So the current “pandemic of the unvaccinated” is actually the “pandemic of giving free reign to the vaccinated”?

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