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‘Not a Silver Bullet’: COVID Vaccine Maker Warns Refusal to Wear Masks ‘Makes No Sense – You’re Going to Get Infected’

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The CEO of Moderna, one of two U.S. companies that are about to submit coronavirus vaccines for emergency approval to the FDA, on Thursday blasted those who continue to refuse to wear masks.

“It’s not a silver bullet,” Stéphane Bancel said to attendees at the virtual Bloomberg New Economy Forum, calling for stronger surveillance and public health measures.

“When you look around the world you have some countries that have done an excellent job, including China, of controlling the virus. And you have some countries where it’s totally out of control,” he said, not naming them. With more than a quarter of a million Americans dead and rapidly approaching 12 million infections, the United States is, however, at the top of the list.

“When you still go today, in some places, and you see, you know, going to crowded places with no masks, or eating inside restaurants with no masks, I don’t understand it. It makes no sense to me.”

“You’re going to get infected,” Bancel warned. “The only question is when.”

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Large Increase in Americans Who Now Identify as LGBTQ – Especially Among Gen Z – But Few Republicans

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Over the past three years, a very short time period, there has been a large increase in the number of Americans who identify as LGBTQ, or any designation other than heterosexual.

According to a just-published report from Gallup, 5.6 percent of Americans identify as LGBT, or non-heterosexual, up from 4.5 percent in 2017. The report covers all of 2020. (Note: Gallup uses the term “LGBT,” a far narrower construct than many Americans observe today. These numbers reflect that specific designation.)

Among Generation Z, which Gallup defines as those 18-23, nearly 16 percent – about one in six – identify as LGBT. That’s almost three times the national average.

About one in eleven Millennials (those born between 1981-1996) or 9.1 percent, say they identify as LGBT.

Gallup also reports more than half of LGBT Americans (54.6%) identify as bisexual. That’s 3.1 percent of the total U.S. adult population.

One in four (24.5%) of LGBT Americans say they are gay, 11.7 percent lesbian, and 11.3% transgender. 3.3 percent “volunteer another non-heterosexual preference or term to describe their sexual orientation, such as queer or same-gender-loving.”

There is also a political component to the study.

13 percent of liberals, but just 2.3 percent of conservatives say they are LGBT. In stricter party terms, “8.8% of Democrats, 6.5% of independents and 1.7% of Republicans identifying as LGBT.”

In related news, U.S. Senator Susan Collins, a Republican of Maine who just last June was the only GOP co-sponsor of the LGBTQ Equality Act, has refused to demonstrate similar leadership this year, when she could cast the deciding vote. President Joe Biden has committed to signing the legislation into law.

 

Image via Shutterstock

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Watch: Biden and Harris Families Hold Nationwide Moment of Silence to Honor 500,000 Americans Who Have Died of COVID

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President Joe Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff on Monday evening at sunset held a moment of silence at a candle-lighting ceremony to honor the 500,000 Americans who have now died from the coronavirus.

The stairs at the South Portico of the White House were filled with candles in memory of those who have died.

Minutes earlier President Biden delivered a short speech meant to comfort those grieving the loss of a loved one to COVID-19.

“We often hear people described as ordinary Americans. There’s no such thing. There’s nothing ordinary about them. The people we lost were extraordinary,” President Biden said.

Biden mourned the lives lost, acknowledging that so many of the “took their final breath alone.”

“I know it’s hard, I remember. That’s how you heal, you have to remember.”

He also said they are never “truly gone” because they “have become part of your heart.”

“We have to fight this together, as one people, as the united states of America,” he said, stressing “united.”

“This nation will know joy again,” he said. “We will get through this, I promise you.”

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Watch: Merrick Garland Tears and Chokes Up When Asked to Describe His Personal Experience Confronting Hate

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Judge Merrick Garland, President Joe Biden’s nominee to be Attorney General, was visibly shaken when Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) asked him to discuss his personal experiences “confronting” hate.

“I come from a family,” Judge Garland began. “My grandparents fled anti-Semitism and persecution,” he said, choking up. “The country took us in and protected us.

“And I feel an obligation to the country to pay back,” he said, starting, it appeared, to cry. “This is the highest best, use of my own set of skills to pay back. And so I want very much to be the kind of attorney, Attorney General that you’re saying I could become. I’ll do my best to try to be that kind of Attorney General.”

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