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Grim facts make vaccine’s slow pace just unacceptable

We as a nation hit a grim milestone this week. Half a million people have died in the past year as a result of COVID-19.

Grim, yes.

Also grim, we recently learned that the National Center for Health Statistics is reporting a significant decline in life expectancy as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

We are told that we just lost roughly a year of life, if the statistics are to be believed.

We wonder if it will only get worse if this public health threat is not soon curtailed and it heightens the desire for many to gain access to the vaccine.

Beyond the desire to get the vaccine, what does this information say to you, as an individual?

It tells us that this is not a time to hide, even though we have been isolated by and large for months.

It tells us that this is a time to live, deliberately, to treasure one another while we still can.

This is a time to make a difference, if in a position to do so, and to help our friends and neighbors as we all struggle to get through it.

We also know that this is not the time to let down our guard. We must remain vigilant. That means social distancing, avoiding crowds and crowding, hand washing and masking.

We must continue to be patient as we calmly wait our turn to receive the vaccine, and then step up and get it in a massive community effort to achieve herd immunity. Once — if — that begins.

Now if only the state would find a way to funnel these vaccines to locations statewide, including here, and help us conquer the threat and our fears.

The big questions is: Can the state — will the state — find a way to successfully do this, and do it posthaste?

Or should we expect more of the same mismanagement we’ve seen so far?

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