Capitol police testimony blunts GOP’s law-and-order message
“You’re talking about people who claim that they are pro-law enforcement, pro-police, pro-law and order,” said Capitol Police Sgt. Aquilino Gonell. “Yet when they have the chance and the opportunity to do something about it, to hold people accountable, you don’t, you pass the bucket, like nothing happened.”
‘The indifference shown to my colleagues is disgraceful’: D.C. police officer condemns lawmakers downplaying Jan. 6
Fanone — who suffered a heart attack and a traumatic brain injury after being attacked by insurrectionists — condemned the Republican lawmakers who “deny or downplay” the Jan. 6 assault.
“I feel like I went to hell and back to protect them, and too many in this room … are now telling me that hell doesn’t exist or hell actually wasn’t that bad,” Fanone testified, furiously slamming his fist on the dais. “The indifference shown to my colleagues is disgraceful.”
Does The Jan. 6 Committee Have What It Takes To Investigate The Big Lie?
Congressional observers stressed to TPM that unless the committee takes a broad view of the conspiracy to undermine democracy in 2020 and beyond, Congress may be unintentionally laying the groundwork for more violence.
“Not having that public reckoning greatly increases the risk of a repeat occurrence that I’m not sure we come back from,” said Ted Kalo, a former general counsel on the House Judiciary Committee.
Kalo and others with whom TPM spoke said such a reckoning would need to go back to at least last year, when Trump and his allies, surrogates and attorneys began sowing the seeds for a contested election.
Is Vaxed America Running Out of Patience?
Most elected Republicans haven’t been explicitly anti-vaccination. Indeed, even before the last couple weeks many have made low volume statements saying they’ve been vaccinated and encouraging others to do so. But they’ve almost all participated in the effort to make vaccine resistance into a kind of freedom movement – banning government or private businesses from using vaccine passports, banning mask mandates, politicizing debates over school reopenings. As a party they’ve leaned into valorizing vaccine resistance and banning any private or governmental efforts to place the burden of the consequences of non-vaccination on those who choose not to be vaccinated.
They thought that would supercharge their already happy prospects for 2022 by riding an anti-vax or anti-vax mandate wave. And now they’re thinking they may have miscalculated.
As Virus Cases Rise, Another Contagion Spreads Among the Vaccinated: Anger
Frustrated by the prospect of a new surge, many Americans are blaming the unvaccinated. A tougher stance may backfire, some experts warn.
As coronavirus cases resurge across the country, many inoculated Americans are losing patience with vaccine holdouts who, they say, are neglecting a civic duty or clinging to conspiracy theories and misinformation even as new patients arrive in emergency rooms and the nation renews mask advisories.
The country seemed to be exiting the pandemic; barely a month ago, a sense of celebration was palpable. Now many of the vaccinated fear for their unvaccinated children and worry that they are at risk themselves for breakthrough infections. Rising case rates are upending plans for school and workplace reopenings, and threatening another wave of infections that may overwhelm hospitals in many communities.
“It’s like the sun has come up in the morning and everyone is arguing about it,” said Jim Taylor, 66, a retired civil servant in Baton Rouge, La., a state in which fewer than half of adults are fully vaccinated.
“The virus is here and it’s killing people, and we have a time-tested way to stop it — and we won’t do it. It’s an outrage.”
What’s Covid?’ Why People at America’s Hardest-Partying Lake Are Not About to Get Vaccinated
At the Lake of the Ozarks, vaccines are shunned, masks are mocked and the long-term consequences take a back seat to the time at hand.
The petite blonde bartender in ripped jean shorts bounced to each side of a square-shaped bar as women in bikinis and shirtless men lined up on a sweltering afternoon to order Bud Light, vodka and soda, and piles of nachos at this dockside retreat in the Lake of the Ozarks region.
In a county designated a Covid hot spot, in a state with one of the lowest vaccination rates in the nation, and in a region where hospitals are nearing capacity as the Delta variant takes hold, Erin, a bartender at Backwater Jack’s, couldn’t be in a more vulnerable position. She interacts closely with hundreds of maskless customers—sometimes on a single day. She knows most of them are probably not vaccinated. And she doesn’t care. She isn’t either.
“I’m living, breathing proof—I’ve not been sick once. I’ve been as hands-on as you can be with people from everywhere,” Erin said, as a motorboat thundered to the dock and another group of customers climbed out. Like others who spoke for this article, she asked to go only by her first name. She said she’d heard a rumor—common among vaccine skeptics but also plainly false—that “more people are dying from getting the vaccine this week.”
“Personally,” Erin added, “I feel like my immune system is doing a good job, so why pump it full of something that we don’t really know what it is?”
Edward Nirenberg/Deplatform Disease:
COVID-19 Vaccine-Acquired vs. Disease-Acquired Immunity: Which is Better?
The gist: Many seem to hold to the incorrect idea that immunity acquired through infection is superior to immunity acquired by vaccination but multiple examples show this isn’t true: recovery from tetanus generally does not confer any protection while vaccination induces protection in virtually everyone, vaccination is far more protective against HPV than infection, and some infectious diseases can recur or develop into chronic diseases like varicella (chickenpox) and hepatitis B. COVID-19 is among the most dangerous respiratory infections that any of us will ever face in our lives. It has killed at least 4 million people in the course of this pandemic (and this is almost certainly an undercount), many of whom were previously healthy, and it has also left uncountably many more struggling with prolonged disability that remains poorly understood and with very limited options as far as treatment. By comparison, any serious adverse events following vaccination are extremely rare- on the order of 1 to 10 per 1,000,000 doses of vaccine, and effectiveness across all variants to date has been largely preserved. Furthermore, mRNA vaccines against COVID-19 show much higher levels of neutralizing antibodies with better ability to cross-protect against variants than recovery from COVID-19, and comparable T cell responses. The durability of these vaccines furthermore looks to be robust. Data are more limited for other vaccine types (though recent data on the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine confirms excellent durability), but the fundamental point is that the proposition that we get to herd immunity through infection is utterly immoral and furthermore ignorant of history. If this were possible to do, measles would have accomplished it because it spreads very rapidly through the population and generates robust protective immunity in virtually everyone who survives it, but we saw regularly huge outbreaks every 2-5 years.
4 Reasons I’m Wearing a Mask Again
Our vaccines are extraordinary, but right now they need all the help they can get.
I’ve been fully vaccinated for two months. I spent the end of spring weaning myself off of masking indoors, and exchanging, for the first time, visible smiles with neighbors in the lobby of our apartment building. I dined, for the first time in a year and a half, at a restaurant. I attended my first party at another (vaccinated) person’s home since the spring of 2020. I am, after all, now at very low risk of getting seriously sick should SARS-CoV-2 infect me, thanks to Pfizer’s vaccine.
But the pandemic is once again entering a new phase that feels more dangerous and more in flux, even for the people lucky enough to have received their lifesaving shots. A more transmissible variant—one that can discombobulate vaccine-trained antibodies—has flooded the world. It’s wreaking havoc among the uninoculated, a group that still includes almost half of Americans and most of the global population. After a prolonged lull, the pandemic’s outlook is grimmer than it’s been in months. I am, for the foreseeable future, back to wearing masks in indoor public places, and there are four big reasons why.