This is America ... land of the free. I have a right to vaccinate or not, wear a mask or not. Because I don’t put on a mask or won’t subject myself to an unproven vaccine does not mean that I'm a bad person, nor am I guilty of any wrongdoing.

If someone is concerned about getting COVID or is compromised in any way, they should wear a mask (if masks work), social distance, get vaccinated. Take care of yourself as necessary for you. Don’t stipulate what I should do.

I'm not responsible for the general public's health, nor are they responsible for mine.

Yes, the hospitals get crowded. It’s not necessarily the available beds, but the fact that there's not enough staff. Once the vaccine mandate is enforced, there is a good possibility of a huge shortage of hospital care staff. I stand behind those that choose that route. No one should be forced to take a vaccine as a requirement for employment.

Our local economy has been devastated with this mask mandate and social distancing. Let the individual decide. They can go into that business or not. It is their choice. Don’t punish the businesses because they don’t mandate mask wearing in their store: they should not be “mask police.”

All we hear on the news is COVID, COVID, COVID, supported by advertising to get the vaccine. It’s odd to be so inundated with "vaccine rah-rah-rah advertising” when America's COVID death toll is actually smaller than that of heart disease or cancer deaths.

According to news reports, COVID has claimed approximately 600,000-plus American lives. Of course, we need to consider “presumed and confirmed” COVID deaths. (cdc.gov)

“About 655,000 Americans die from heart disease each year." (cancer.org)

"In 2020 there was 606,520 cancer deaths in the United States.” In 2021 the estimated cancer deaths are 608,570. (aha.org)

Drug overdose deaths in the U.S. in 2020 was an estimated 93,331, including 69,710 involving opioids, according to data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Am I supposed to interfere with people’s lives to keep them from getting heart disease? How about cancer? Should I run roughshod over drug dealers?

Nope. Everyone should take care of themselves.

Regarding masking and the COVID vaccine … I am in charge of my health — it’s my choice.

Lesley Neuman

Lostine

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