Public must see leaders step up, receive vaccine
Pfizer just announced that its COVID-19 vaccine conferred 95% protection and results for other promising vaccine candidates will be available soon. These vaccines can end the epidemic, but only if people take them.
Recent polls indicate that at least 1 in 3 Americans is reluctant, fearing side effects and worried by an antivax movement that has disseminated discredited falsehoods. Education by doctors has not persuaded many who are fixed in their reluctance. So, how do we encourage acceptance of safe, effective, life-saving vaccines?
We must because reaching “herd immunity” that protects us all — even babies and the immune compromised — will necessitate broad immunization. Once vaccines are proven safe and effective, it would help if they are easily tolerated, and so far they are. Now we must get respected leaders to sign up to be immunized.
Already Dr. Anthony Fauci, the highly respected director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, has said he’ll sign up. No matter where he is, no matter what he’s doing, Donald Trump is respected by many Americans. Ordinarily, his recovery from COVID would result in immunity, but the president was treated with antibody that might keep his own immune system from developing protection.
In principle, a blood test could determine if that’s the case. If so, he’s got to sign up. Great sports heroes like LeBron James are admired by nearly everyone. He’s got to sign up. Joe Biden will be our new president; he’s got to sign up. So, Donald, LeBron and Joe: Why don’t you vow today that when safe, effective COVID-19 vaccines are available, you’ll be among the first to be immunized?
That would go a long way to generating broad vaccine coverage that will be needed to end an epidemic that has already cost nearly 240,000 US lives.
Michael M. Lederman, MD, professor of medicine, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland
Recent proposal would only perpetuate climate crisis
State Reps. J. Todd Smith, R-Germantown; Dick Stein, R-Norwalk; and Don Jones, R-Freeport, have just introduced House Bill 786, which tells the Power Siting Board “not to issue a certification for any major utility to be powered by solar or wind …”
It is an attempt to stifle the aggregation of electrical power that was just passed by Columbus voters. It is a bill that is in absolute denial of the climate crisis we are facing. It is a result of the influence of the coal, natural gas and oil lobby in the work of we the people. It looks like another House Bill 6.
It is even inaccurate to say that this bill is introduced in regular session of the General Assembly, because the session after an election is anything but regular. The practice of this session after the election should be eliminated because of many bills being clumped together in a single bill: a “Christmas tree” bill, which other legislators don’t even read, and the Ohio Supreme Court won’t overturn.
Please oppose HB 786.
Bob Krasen, Columbus
People in service industry deserve our support, thanks
Now that the election hoopla is winding down, I would like to give a shout out to all of the restaurant employees around town and say thank you. These individuals, young and old, are working under challenging circumstances to serve the public and make a living.
It’s hard work under normal conditions and even more difficult now with all of the restrictions in place. As a former waitress (before the word “server” became politically correct) in several restaurants in Westerville, I understand the value of tips, and I urge everyone to tip generously if you can, both in restaurants and the drive-through. Some might not be permitted to accept tips but to those who can, it’s a sign of support that could make their day.
I’ve tipped several drive-through employees recently and saw their eyes light up because it was so unexpected and so appreciated. I suspect they were also smiling but couldn’t see through their masks. Many are working in restaurants because of job loss, and if the COVID-19 numbers don’t decrease, we could have another shutdown.
Let’s show our appreciation, because we need them.
Linda Lewis, Westerville
Ohio voters are holding back state’s progress
In his Sunday op-ed “Ohioans back Trump while lagging nation in prosperity,” Thomas Suddes points out that the typical Ohioan is poorer, less educated and older than the typical American. He doesn’t even mention that while only 60% of Americans identify as white, 80% of Ohioans identify that way.
Suddes also says, “Unless and until Democrats recapture the General Assembly to move Ohio beyond the status quo, that’s what life (and bank accounts) for many Ohioans will remain — status quo.”
I would love to see Democrats capture Ohio’s General Assembly, but even if we fix our gerrymandering problem, which is not a certainty, Ohio just has too many relatively poor, undereducated, old white voters for that to happen anytime soon.
Vic Presutti, Dayton
End of ‘Hokey Pokey’ could damage DeWine’s career
Gov. Mike DeWine can take away the siritaki, the czardas, the tarantella, the dabke and even the Bristol Stomp and the boogaloo, but for God’s sake man, not “The Hokey Pokey”!
If you ban the Hokey, the virus wins.
Bill Somers, Worthington
Process for confirming our identity seems outdated
I recently sold a condo in the Columbus area and bought another, also in the Columbus area. The closing is being delayed on the sale because someone with a name merely similar to ours has “outstanding liens,” nothing to do with my condo. In the year 2020 (not 1920), we had to take a 30-mile round trip to sign a paper saying that we were not the person(s) who had liens, even though none were connected to our address and names were only similar.
Also, the attorney general’s office needs 10 days to verify what is obvious. All the rest of the transaction was accomplished on an iPad at home. Why is this kind of glacial task from last century occurring alongside a streamlined real estate transaction?
Republicans must defend legitimacy of election
The president’s behavior since the election makes clear that, despite claims to the contrary, he is undermining voters’ trust in the process. He has a right to demand recounts and, in cases where there is some evidence of voter fraud, to pursue those as well. However, no such evidence has been produced. Moreover, the president is not seeking action in a reasonable, measured way. Instead, he is set on inflaming passions and distrust in our elections by making unfounded claims in intemperate language.
In 2016, numerous Republicans pushed back, among them Jon Husted, who was then the secretary of state of Ohio. He was quoted in the New York Times as saying “that it was ‘wrong and engaging in irresponsible rhetoric’ for any candidate to question the integrity of elections without evidence.”
Now that the votes of the 2020 election have been cast, it is time for the GOP to defend the legitimacy of our election. Republicans need to affirm their trust in the integrity of our system and state that recounts should go forward where the results are within the margin of error and legal challenges pursued where there is credible evidence of fraud.
Barbara Haeger. Columbus
Friends, this isn’t the time to be complacent. If you are ready to fight for the soul of this nation, you can start by donating to elect Joe Biden and Kamala Harris by clicking the button below.
Thank you so much for supporting Joe Biden’s Presidential campaign.