Politics jeopardizing kids’ health

"As long as this pandemic is viewed through a partisan lens, it’s hard to see how we’ll ever get past it."



September 24, 2020 - 8:36 AM

Iola elementary students line up for the first day of school properly guarded against the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo by REGISTER FILE PHOTO

Some parents in Neosho, Mo., on the western edge of the Ozarks, were all for Newton County’s ongoing “experiment” of letting kids who’d been exposed to COVID-19 go back to class and even play sports instead of quarantining.

“They have to have so many kids in school to keep them open,” and with hundreds out for 14 days at a time, in keeping with CDC guidelines, that was becoming an issue, said Cathy Dickens, a small business owner whose youngest child just graduated from high school.

The health risks involved just didn’t strike her as too dramatic: “It’s like the other things you spread. You socially distance and wear a mask, yet with a vaccine, we’ll actually inject the virus. It’s proven you’re going to spread it, so you might as well get it out there.”

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