[Sun Gazette Newspapers provides content to, but otherwise is unaffiliated with, InsideNoVa or Rappahannock Media LLC.]

Editor: I found the Sun Gazette’s July 22 editorial [“Will N. Va Ever ‘Follow the Science,’”] mean-spirited and misinformative.

COVID guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are not directives. They offer recommendations for lowering, but not eliminating, the risk of catching or transmitting COVID.

There are lots of reasons why vaccinated people may wish to lower their risk further, including the very elderly or immunosuppressed concerned about full efficacy of the vaccine; people fearful of even a low risk of transmitting the virus to young children or high-risk family members; people like me, vaccinated over 65ers with underlying medical conditions that could result in severe outcomes from even a mild case of COVID; people for whom a positive test, even asymptomatic, could impact on their job or travel. And now with the ultra-contagious delta variant, concerns are even greater.

Your editorial, rather than being constructive, only encourages bullying and harassment of those who wish to maximize their protection.

Why not use your voice each edition in an attempt to decrease vaccine hesitancy as well as decry bullying? And as to your cheap shots at Dr. Fauci who, for decades, helped fight multiple epidemics – his “celebrity status” came about when he stood up as the voice of reason and scientific validity in an administration which, vaccine development aside, based its COVID policy on lies and self-serving misinformation.

Richard Michaelson, McLean

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