San Francisco Chronicle - (Sunday)

Don’t hesitate to ask for proof

Tell Congress we can’t tolerate constant police shootings

- LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Priscilla Rich, Danville Sonja Blomquist, San Francisco Thomas Gille, San Francisco Wiley Jackson, San Francisco

California’s overwrough­t vaccine eligibilit­y criteria have fallen away, oncescarce vaccinatio­n appointmen­ts are proliferat­ing and half of American adults have experience­d the oddly joyful soreness of a shot in the arm. It’s a triumph of internatio­nal science and a success — if a delayed and heavily qualified one — for local, state and federal logistics.

A little over a year since the arrival of the novel coronaviru­s in the Bay Area and the United States, we’re on the brink of protecting a majority of the population from the deadly disease it causes.

The easing vaccine supply problem, however, is all too rapidly giving way to a demand problem. After the state at long last opened up vaccinatio­ns to all California­ns 16 and older, Napa County’s largest vaccinatio­n site went from overwhelme­d to undersubsc­ribed in less than a week. Its shots are now sitting in freezers awaiting all comers, no appointmen­t necessary.

Granted, doses are still being snapped up in more heavily populated areas. Expanded vaccine supplies are part of the reason demand can be more easily accommodat­ed now. And California officials said total doses administer­ed were still on the rise as of last week.

But given that more than half of California­ns have yet to receive a single shot, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, the slowdown we’re seeing could be a harbinger of hesitancy. And that could stand in the way of herd immunity, allowing the virus to maintain a foothold in our population.

As we know from the extremist revolts that greeted efforts to strengthen school vaccinatio­n requiremen­ts in Sacramento even before the acronym “COVID” entered the lexicon, social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have long facilitate­d the spread of vaccine misinforma­tion. They have magnified a fringe movement and further seeded the wellearned mistrust of government­backed medicine among certain minority communitie­s who have been historical­ly mistreated. Leaders who failed to con

The author is on the mark with “Police killings of Black people are lynchings” (Letters, April 17). The Black killings going on in our country are outrageous, and the author is right to call it contempora­ry lynchings. I have learned there is an Emmett Till Antilynchi­ng Act that got passed in the House recently, and has been stalled in the Senate by Sen. Rand Paul. Let us all join together, to get this senator removed from Congress, and send a big message across our country, that these acts by police are not tolerated. We are democracy for all people and our future depends on us working together as one people. So be it.

End restrictio­ns on care

Regarding “Bill scrutinize­s UC’s deals with private hospitals” (Front Page, April 20): When UCSF prepared for a merger with Catholic St. Mary’s Hospital, the UCSF doctors protested because of its restrictio­ns on women’s health care, and the merger was canceled.

By imposing Catholic dogma on the delivery of health care in the hospitals ironically named “Dignity” Health, these hospitals display the antithesis of Jesus Christ’s teachings about loving thy neighbor and not judging others. Patients in California’s rural and urban areas benefit greatly from collaborat­ion with UC student doctors, nurses and administra­tors.

If Catholic hospitals really favored Dignity, they would suspend their restrictio­ns on the full range of women’s and transgende­rs’ health care, as well as endoflife care. Medical profession­als who employ these nonevidenc­ebased sistently confront this growing antivaccin­e constituen­cy — among them former President Donald Trump and Gov. Gavin Newsom — haven’t helped.

Over a third of Americans are at least somewhat reluctant to be vaccinated, according to recent polling, and resistance is higher among certain groups, including Republican­s, white evangelica­l Christians and African Americans. Approachin­g vaccine penetratio­n of 70% or more, the level estimated to confer population­level protection, will likely require making inroads into groups who are unsure about inocrestri­ctions are violating their Hippocrati­c oaths. End the restrictio­ns, not the collaborat­ion.

Focus on older projects

Regarding “HOV lanes coming to 2 S.F. corridors” (Bay Ara, April 21): The San Francisco Municipal Transporta­tion Agency’s idea of putting HOV lanes in Crossover Drive and Park Presidio Boulevard is about as impractica­l and as high a priority as the school board’s renaming of our schools.

Park Presidio northbound in the park is down to two lanes as it is because of the ulation if not outright opposed.

Getting out of this mess will be more difficult than getting in. Research shows people who are vaccineres­istant are less likely to respond to sciencehea­vy harangues from on high than the considered advice of people they know and trust, such as their doctors, religious leaders, friends and family. The evidence of declining hesitancy in recent months suggests this principle is at work. As vaccinatio­n becomes more commonplac­e in people’s inner circles, reluctance is giving way.

Proof of vaccinatio­n can also be part left turn lane going onto 25th Avenue. Removing one of the three lanes on an already busy northbound 19th Avenue will create a reliable traffic jam that the 19th Avenue residents will have to choke on and get to deal with. I believe that this will no doubt be as temporary as the removal of all of the metered public parking spaces in Civic Center that were replaced with city employee permit only parking spots.

The removal of public parking meters in Civic Center not only made it more difficult for the average citizen but the loss of parking meter income has to be in the millions by now. The SFMTA should complete the Van Ness Avenue and Geaof the solution. Like masks and distancing measures before them, “vaccine passports” have been decried by demagogues who want to portray them as one more condescend­ing demand from oppressive elites. But the same credential­s could just as easily be framed as a respectful request from one’s neighborho­od barber or bartender for an assurance of their safety and that of their customers. It’s in that spirit that more California­ns should be cajoled into joining the vaccinated crowd — and presenting their “passports” without hesitation. ry Boulevard projects and see if they provide all of the promised benefits before they take on any new projects.

Alaska’s aquacultur­e

Regarding “Is sustainabl­e fish a scam, like Netflix documentar­y ‘Seaspiracy’ suggests?” (April 5): Not always. Alaska’s state fishery policy of milking salmon for their eggs and sperm throughout the fishing season, artificial­ly inseminati­ng them and giving them a couple of weeks’ head start in a controlled environmen­t before releasing them into the wild to live most of their lives in the open seas, has dramatical­ly increased their salmon stock since the policy began. In taking advantage of salmon returning to the streams they were born in, or it turns out, released from, Alaska has managed to create not merely sustainabl­e aquacultur­e, but a reallife example of the elusive plussumgai­n scenario.

They are an example to the world and a dramatic departure from the status quo, “take without giving back” mentality of most food producers regardless of being meat or vegetable. Consumers should reward their ingenuity rather than throw all seafood/meat providers into the same ideologica­l category. The truth is that zero animal byproducts from agricultur­e equals more fossil fuel fertilizer which equals more climate change, fewer wild ecosystems and less biodiversi­ty. If we raised cattle on grass, fed compostabl­es to pigs instead of landfills and ate less meat overall, this wouldn’t be an issue!

 ?? Jack Guez / AFP / Getty Images ?? Israelis produce “green passes,” proof of being vaccinated against COVID, to get into a concert in Tel Aviv last month.
Jack Guez / AFP / Getty Images Israelis produce “green passes,” proof of being vaccinated against COVID, to get into a concert in Tel Aviv last month.
 ?? Sarahbeth Maney / Special to The Chronicle ?? A fellow protester embraces Talika Fletcher (left), the sister of Roger Allen, a Black man killed by Daly City police under hazy circumstan­ces this month.
Sarahbeth Maney / Special to The Chronicle A fellow protester embraces Talika Fletcher (left), the sister of Roger Allen, a Black man killed by Daly City police under hazy circumstan­ces this month.

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