There will be enough coronavirus vaccine for all American adults by the end of May, President Joe Biden vowed on Tuesday. That’s two months earlier than a previous target.
Additionally, he is urging states to speed up the process of reopening schools by getting teachers vaccinated.
According to the Associated Press, the Merck drug company will join with Johnson & Johnson to help manufacture that company’s one-dose inoculation.
Government agencies are now being joined by national drug store and pharmacy chains in giving “the jab.” According to the calculations of The New York Times, 16 percent of all American adults have had at least one dose, and 7.9 percent have been “fully vaccinated.”
In some areas, improving statistics have led to a loosening of protections against the spread of COVID-19. In Texas, Gov. Greg Abbot said Tuesday that the statewide requirement to wear face coverings will be lifted as of March 10, and that all businesses will be allowed to reopen without regard to limits on capacity.
He acknowledged that the coronavirus was still a health concern, but said that testing and vaccines had reduced the risk. “People and businesses don’t need the state telling them how to operate,” he said.
Federal health officials and state Democratic leaders criticized the move. “This will kill Texans,” said Gilberto Hinojosa, chair of the Texas Democratic Party.
News: Civil rights icon Jordan dead at 85
Vernon Jordan, a leader of the civil rights movement that lifted legal barriers to full citizenship for African Americans, has died at the age of 85.
His family reported Monday night that Jordan died at his home in the Washington, D.C. area.
In addition to his role in helping influence the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, he was a close friend and adviser to President Barack Obama.
Business: Target hits targets, and wow
Other retailers have shrunk or even gone into bankruptcy because of the coronavirus pandemic, but Target is breaking records of profitability. According to USA Today, sales at the discount department store chain grew by over $15 billion in 2020, better than the sales growth total for the last decade.
Target benefitted from its strong online presence as well as the fact that its grocery line qualified its stores as “essential” businesses that remained opened when others closed.
- What goes up evidently must come down, especially on Wall Street. After a very strong day on Monday, all three major stock indexes turned sharply downward on Tuesday. The Dow Jones Average dropped 143.99 points to 31,391.52. The S&P 500 declined 31.53 points to 3,870.29 and Nasdaq took a 230.04 loss to 13,358.79.
Sports: “Plantation” remark raises ire
The use of the term “plantation” in a postgame talk to his team has landed Greg McDermott, coach of the Creighton University men’s basketball team, in hot water.
He apologized for the remark, which the Associated Press reports as being: “Guys, we got to stick together. We need boath feet in. I need everybody to stay on the plantation. I can’t have anybody leave the plantation.”
Creighton, the nation’s 15th-ranked team, has several Black players on its roster. “Plantation” is a term often associated with the pre-Civil War slavery of African Americans.
Weather: Rain to pay a brief visit
The sunny weather that Orange County has enjoyed for the last few days will take a hiatus on Wednesday when a rainstorm hits us. The daytime high will drop to 61, with an overnight low of 48. Sunny skies will resume on Thursday (high of 67 and low of 48), followed by partly cloudy weather Friday through Monday with daytime highs dropping to the mid-60s by the weekend. Along the coast in Huntington Beach, daytime highs will be two to four degrees lower.
Categories: The Wider World