Headline RoundupMay 24th, 2021

Perspectives: Divides on Public Health Measures as Pandemic Ends

AllSides Summary

As the COVID-19 pandemic comes to a close, people remain split on continued public health restrictions, including mask-wearing and social distancing. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released new guidelines earlier this month saying vaccinated people could ditch the facemask in most situations; the vaccines approved for emergency use in the U.S. are between 65 and 95% effective, based on clinical trials. Governments in 20 states, as well as Puerto Rico and Washington D.C., still require masks in most indoor public settings. 

Voices are divided across the spectrum. Some left-rated voices say that they're not yet ready to stop wearing facemasks, citing the lack of 100% vaccine effectiveness and arguing that wearing a mask "says to those around us that, whatever our vaccine status, we value community safety." Some right-rated voices highlighted positive data about infection rates and the vaccine rollout, and said overbearing public health restrictions and guidance had "paralyzed the nation with fear." Other voices advocated for a combination of informed caution and willing return to normalcy. Last week, AllSides explored more about polarization around masks and vaccines in our Perspectives section.

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