Opinion | Enlist Trump Against Vaccine Hesitancy

To the Editor: Re “ Biden Condemns Vaccine Disinformation on Facebook ” (news article, July 17): A note to President Trump: It’s been ...


To the Editor:

Re “Biden Condemns Vaccine Disinformation on Facebook” (news article, July 17):

A note to President Trump: It’s been more than eight months since the presidential election. So it’s time to move on. But the Covid pandemic and the nation’s response will be associated, indelibly, with your administration.

You were prescient and bold in initiating Operation Warp Speed. Not only was it a great lifesaving humanitarian success, but it also created new avenues for future vaccine development. Bravo!

But the virus remains on its destructive path. Too many folks remain skeptical about accepting the vaccine, particularly among your die-hard supporters. President Biden’s attempt to increase the vaccination rate by door-to-door interaction faces dubious success. But your vast outreach may well prove more effective. Your adherents trust you. Persuading them to accept the Covid vaccine could well lead to herd immunity for the country.

That will be no small accomplishment. It could well drown out the voices calling for new party leadership and further enhance your place in history. A win, win.

Howard Quinn
Bronx

To the Editor:

Most of those who are leery of getting the Covid vaccine are supporters of former President Donald Trump. He has deservedly claimed credit for the quick development and manufacture of the vaccine. Perhaps it would make at least some of his supporters more amenable to getting the shots if the media and others with public voices would refer to it as the “Trump vaccine.”

Russell Suskind
Newark, Ohio

To the Editor:

Re “It’s Not ‘Vaccine Hesitancy,’ It’s a Lack of Trust in the System,” by Ginia Bellafante (Big City column, July 11):

Lotteries. Prizes. Pleas by celebrities and public health officials. These attempts to persuade the reluctant to get vaccinated have generally failed. So why not enlist those who were resisters themselves and now regret believing in the disinformation that made them or their loved ones Covid victims?

Recruit people who have experienced the reality of the growing danger of the Delta variant. Pay them to speak to those who have the same beliefs they once did. Let them tell how their refusal to get vaccinated led them to find themselves hospitalized or lose loved ones. Have them describe how devastating this plague can be. Run those testimonials on social media. Air them on TV and radio stations, especially those like Fox that spread so much Covid misinformation.

Opinion Conversation
Questions surrounding the Covid-19 vaccine and its rollout.

Those who now wish they hadn’t listened to the lies spread by the right-wing media should be the ones talking to those who still believe those lies. Perhaps they can succeed where bribes, medical experts, celebrities and public officials have failed.

Nancy Ginsburg Gill
Los Altos, Calif.

To the Editor:

Re “Struggle to Prosecute Rape Endures Despite #MeToo” (front page, July 19):

As a lawyer who represents sexual assault survivors in civil cases, all too often I see my clients cross-examined by defendants’ lawyers about why they didn’t go to the police. This is an effort to exploit a myth perpetrated by Donald Trump and others accused of sexual assault that a failure to report to the police is a sign that the claim is false.

But as your recent reporting makes clear, the sad truth is that accountability through the criminal justice system is often unobtainable, even for the few survivors brave enough to try.

Sexual assaults are consistently underreported: Only about one in three is ever brought to the police. That’s not because victims are lying: The data is clear that very few reports of sexual assault are false.

Victims fear reporting these crimes because they dread the reaction they will receive. It brings up all the burdens of re-traumatization and re-victimization, with very little promise of conviction.

That means that until our criminal justice system is seriously overhauled, a civil lawsuit is often the only viable option survivors have to hold those who raped them accountable.

Zoe Salzman
New York

To the Editor:

Re “Texas Has Broken My Heart” (Opinion guest essay, July 15):

Mimi Swartz spoke for many of us who love Texas for reasons we can’t always pin down. And some of us even love the partisans we disagree with. Some of them have rescued us from high water, helped find lost dogs, said howdy when we didn’t even know them.

It’s hard to say why Texas is a great state. Ms. Swartz named one of the big ones, which is friendly acceptance of most people who are different from us. A mosque in Victoria, Texas, was burned down and then built right back by kinder, more sensible people in that small city.

So when faced by the obstructionist, wrong-minded, small-minded, ill-willed lot who are running the state government right now, it is hard to do anything but cry. I won’t go state shopping, but sometimes it’s hard not to want to. Thanks to Ms. Swartz for so accurately expressing the difference between most Texans and their state government.

Leslie Gerber
Houston

To the Editor:

Re “Republicans Boycott Riot Investigation in Clash With Pelosi” (news article, July 22):

The Republicans who would shift the blame for the Jan. 6 assault on Congress to Democrats for not adequately planning for such an event — that is like asking, “Why was your nose in the way of my fist?”

Peter Eisinger
Wellfleet, Mass.
The writer is emeritus professor of public policy at the New School.

To the Editor:

Re “Hong Kong Police Arrest 5 Over Children’s Books” (news article, July 23):

I keep reading about how the Chinese authoritarian political system seeks to supplant liberal democracies. And yet, how weak (not strong) is a government that is afraid of children’s books? The book in question is an allegory depicting predatory wolves and innocent sheep.

This is just the latest episode of China’s being afraid of its own people, whom the government must continually oppress, suppress and repress in the name of “security.” Those are the actions of a weak (not a strong) nation.

To the Editor:

Re “Biden’s Pre-K and College Plan Aims to Be a Ladder to Success” (front page, July 17):

The president’s proposal for expanding the country’s educational system is more than the dream of progressive Americans. It is a direct expression of one of America’s bedrock principles: equal opportunity. In our modern world, equal opportunity necessitates equal educational opportunity.

The brain is greatly shaped by educational experiences during the first years of life. A country’s strength also depends on the post-high-school additional brain training provided to as many of its citizens as possible.

Decades ago, my classmates and I, students at the Bronx High School of Science, had been born at the tail end of the Great Depression. Our parents had little or no money to pay for college. Yet all of us knew that we would be able to attend college, because tuition at the City College of New York was close to zero.

Many contributions were made to our society by my classmates. For many, this would not have been possible without support for higher education.

The brain training in reasoning provided by higher education holds true not just for students of specialized high schools. Providing it for all will ensure that our citizens flourish and can contribute to the country using the best of their individual abilities.

Monica Starkman
Ann Arbor, Mich.
The writer is emerita professor of psychiatry at the University of Michigan.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Opinion | Enlist Trump Against Vaccine Hesitancy
Opinion | Enlist Trump Against Vaccine Hesitancy
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