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The delta variant is dangerously different | Letters
Here’s what readers are saying in Thursday’s letters to the editor.
Patrons of Busch Gardens Tampa Bay prepare to ride a shuttle from a parking lot to the park’s entrance on Aug. 2, 2021, in Tampa. Masks and mask mandates are once again being discussed as the delta variant continues to spread throughout communities across the country and in Florida.
Patrons of Busch Gardens Tampa Bay prepare to ride a shuttle from a parking lot to the park’s entrance on Aug. 2, 2021, in Tampa. Masks and mask mandates are once again being discussed as the delta variant continues to spread throughout communities across the country and in Florida. [ DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times ]
Published Aug. 5

Delta is just bad

Don’t tie schools’ hands to limit COVID spread | Editorial, Aug. 4

We absolutely must learn to see the delta variant with our naked eyes. This really is not the same game we have played so far. For those who have not heard, the viral load provided by delta is about 1,000 times that of the original virus. That is why it is so insanely more transmissible, why people get sick sooner (four days typically rather than six), and why they get sicker. It is critically important to realize that viruses evolve, and that we must evolve our thinking and our behavior along with the changing virus.

If we don’t, delta will truly overwhelm the health systems. Tallahassee Memorial had to reopen its COVID unit a few days ago. The number quickly grew to 21, and as of Tuesday it was 70. That may not sound like much to some, but this stands to be an exponential explosion, and I assure you, as a retired R.N., that the medical staff thinks it’s a lot. Pandemics, and defiance, are just bad. Concerning fully vaccinated people’s ability to spread the delta variant: First, it seems that if we are vaccinated we will not become severely sick or die. That privilege is sadly reserved for the unvaccinated. We can, however, spread the virus, even though vaccinated fully.

Delta offers a huge viral load relative to the original virus — many, many more viral particles hanging out, ready to be breathed, coughed, sneezed, or laughed out into the air (where they can hang out for hours). So you are vaccinated and have no symptoms, but because someone blessed you with delta, and you harbor it in your nose or nasopharynx, and because it is so much more infectious, you can spread it. That’s the reason behind wearing masks, even if vaccinated fully, in enclosed spaces and when outside around others. I hope this helps explain why we need to wear a mask now where we did not under similar circumstances previously. Delta is just bad.

Jon Soskis, Havana, Fla.

Purge or cover?

Gov. Cuomo sexually harassed multiple women, probe finds | Aug. 4

Sexual misconduct and harassment should be dealt with and perpetrators punished. So, why does one party cover for its members’ misconduct, for example, Matt Gaetz and Donald Trump, who both bragged about their exploits, in contrast with what Democrats did and are doing with Al Franken and Andrew Cuomo? Republicans provide cover, while Democrats purge. Where’s the equal treatment?

Brian Walkowiak, St. Petersburg

Get this deal on the road

Lawmakers plug away on infrastructure | Aug. 1

One in five miles, or 173,000 total miles, of our highways and major roads and 45,000 bridges are in poor condition. President Joe Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure deal means faster, safer roads for the American people.

Paul Bacon, Hallandale Beach

Mississippi vs. Florida

Despite new COVID surge in Florida, DeSantis holds to anti-mask stance | Aug. 4

When I was growing up in Florida, we used to say that Mississippi existed so that Florida wouldn’t be last. Given our governor’s position regarding vaccine passports and masks in schools and other places, I now believe that Florida has given up its place to Mississippi and vice versa.

Gerald Taylor, Wesley Chapel

Not visiting Florida

Despite new COVID surge in Florida, DeSantis holds to anti-mask stance | Aug. 4

Hello, Florida, from Idaho. I’m writing because the people you elect affect us all. We’d like to visit Florida, but your COVID-19 policies are insane and your infection rates prove it. Figure it out. Alabama’s Republican governor did.

Mark Cook, Boise

Pets and patience

I’m disciplining, not torturing, my dog | Column, Aug. 4

If one doesn’t have the patience to properly train a dog or cat without inflicting pain, then you should not have a pet.

David Gedansky, Palm Harbor