Letters to the Editor, August 6

Marco Eagle
Editorial cartoon

What’s taking the FDA so long?

I did everything possible for my wife and I to get the COVID vaccinations when they were released. I traveled 240 miles round-trip to get both Pfizer shots. People are hesitant to get this vaccination because the FDA had still NOT approved this vaccination except under an emergency approval. What is taking the FDA so long to approve vaccines that 165,000,000 Americans have already received?

Anthony Riviezzo, Marco Island

World must demand accounting from China

The role of China in the worldwide pandemic we are now experiencing can be expected to be the subject of attention and discussion for years even after the virus hopefully becomes history. The issue as to whether the virus was man-made or natural remains to be determined. No direct evidence has been developed yet to answer that question. Direct evidence in all likelihood could be found in the records of the Wuhan laboratory. Circumstantial evidence would seem to point to the Wuhan laboratory as the possible source of the virus leaving us with the issue of whether its release was intentional or accidental. Why did China not share with the world the information about COVID-19 that they released when they must have known that a pandemic could likely result? This intransigence continues to this day. The net result creates an aura of guilt on China’s part with respect to the virus. The world community must unite in demanding an investigation, findings and an accounting from China if the findings support a charge of intentional wrongdoing or gross negligence on its part. The exact cause of the pandemic must be determined to prevent any chance of something like this happening again.

Walt Kozlowski, Naples

'Tweaking' 'Roe v. Wade

The recent letter urging the “tweaking” of Roe v. Wade ignores realities known only to women seeking early access to abortion. Many states require one- to three-day “waiting periods” for patients who seek abortion care. Some require in-person counseling (not phone or Internet) before the waiting period begins. The rationale is that women may “change their minds,” though research from ACOG (American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology) found waiting periods delayed and distressed women but did not change their certainty to obtain an abortion.

Mandatory waiting periods also unfairly burden low-income families. Research shows that most women who have abortions already have other children (59 percent). Say you are a working mother whose closest abortion provider is miles away; if you can get childcare, transportation, and time off your job(s) you may arrive only to find that you have wait up to 72 more hours for the procedure.

Many states have also passed Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers (TRAP) laws, which set standards that are difficult, if not impossible, for abortion providers to meet. According to the Guttmacher Institute, most TRAP laws apply state standards for ambulatory surgical centers to abortion

clinics, even though surgical centers tend to provide riskier, more invasive procedures and use higher levels of sedation. Some TRAP laws require clinicians performing abortions have admitting privileges at a local hospital, though complications from abortion that require hospital admission are rare. And just to confirm who is “screaming” about abortion, you need only observe what is going outside the Fort Myers Planned Parenthood, where patients – regardless of the reason for their appointment — are harassed and shamed by megaphone-toting “religious” protesters.

Lisa Freund, Naples

Do these things to get them vaccinated

According to Saturday’s Wall Street Journal, 92 percent of U.K. adults have some degree of immunity to COVID-19 from receiving

one or two shots or from past immunity. Moreover, despite the Delta variant, new cases are receding, down 40 percent from a week ago, allowing restrictions to begin easing.

The Journal continues, France now requires proof of vaccination or a recent negative COVID test to enter bars, restaurants and other places of public accommodation. Many EU counties are following suit.

The U.S., second in vaccination rates to the U.K., still has stubborn pockets of the unvaccinated. However, widespread encouragement from public officials, celebrities, businesses and the media are beginning to yield some success. As a result, daily vaccination rates, mostly stalled since July 3, are now on the upswing.

But public encouragement is not enough. Neither are mask mandates. Why punish the vaccinated for the sins of the unvaccinated? Instead, go directly to the heart of the problem, the unvaccinated. Get them vaccinated.

Three things need to be done.

First, restrict the unvaccinated access to public accommodations.

Second, remove one excuse by insisting the FDA approve broad use of the vaccine rather than maintain the “emergency use” designation. After all, 160 million Americans are already vaccinated.

Third, declare a national state of emergency forcing compliance; alternatively, jawbone the states into mandating it. After all, it’s done with polio, measles, and other harmful diseases.

Bill Korstad, Naples