I had my two shots. I still have a lot of masks (the decorative ones and the unfashionable ones) and I’m ready.
The new guidelines set by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advise that fully vaccinated people can now walk around places without wearing a mask.
While there seems to be a lot of confusion about whether those of us who have been vaccinated should still wear a mask, I am not in conflict.
“One mask is mostly about protecting others,” says Dr. Allison Arwady, Chicago’s public health commissioner. “I wear my mask to protect you. You’re wearing a mask to protect me. “
I knew it.
But frankly, every time I left home with a mask on, I also felt safer.
If I got in my car and realized I wasn’t wearing a mask, I would go back to my apartment, not because I wanted to protect others, but because I was being watched.
I still don’t feel comfortable with my barefoot face when I’m away from home, in a store, or among people I don’t know. Despite what the CDC said, the unmasking will take a while.
But now that we are in the honor system, with some shops, restaurants and other venues opening their doors open to people who are completely vaccinated, mixed messaging is worrying about the use of masks.
How do we know if the person who is a little too close without a mask is vaccinated or just stubborn?
Last year, enraged customers at some stores assaulted employees whose job it was to make sure shoppers wore face masks. And those customers weren’t always belligerent supporters of Trump trying to make a point. In Lawndale, two sisters stabbed a security guard 27 times after a confrontation for refusing to wear a mask and use a hand sanitizer.
We can expect to see other violent clashes if companies try to verify that customers have been vaccinated.
Unfortunately, many people don’t care about others. Whether they make a political statement or are too demanding to put on a mask, they will prolong the battle against COVID-19.
So I’m busting while I can.
I was afraid they would inject me with a vaccine that rushed into the world because of the pandemic. But when I was next in line, I just grimaced and finished. Like millions of other Americans, I have found that the side effects of the two-dose vaccine are minimal.
Still, I can’t convince two of my four adult children to get vaccinated. No matter how attentive they are to their health and children, they adopt an attitude of waiting.
There are too many other Americans who do the same.
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, although the COVID vaccine is readily available, fewer people are now targeting the shots. As of Friday, only 47% of adults in Illinois have been fully vaccinated.
It could be another long, hot and boring summer for people fleeing the vaccine. Instead of being subjected to temperature scans and questionnaires to access public spaces, Chicagoans should show a vaccination card.
He is likely to open a new can of worms.
But as I get out of my bubble, I will also replace the hand sanitizer again, just in case.
Science keeps telling me that by wearing a mask and getting the vaccine, I am protecting others.
But my instincts still remind me that in the end I protect myself.