Finish the Job

Time to Conquer Fears and Get Vaccinated

“If you’re not vaccinated, you’re part of the problem …”

Gov. Jim Justice was blunt last week as he also praised those who have worked to help West Virginia reach 64.5% of eligible residents having received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. To that point, he said “West Virginia, you’ve done a whale of a job.”

But at that briefing, the number of active COVID-19 cases in the state was 1,093. In the most recent count of deaths from the virus, there were four. That is still four too many, folks. The work is not over.

Justice talks about “pushing them and pushing them to get there,” when referring to those who are still avoiding getting their first (or second) vaccine shot. At some point, it is a matter of whether someone wants to do the right thing, or whether they are more comfortable giving in to unfounded fears and conspiracy theories.

Make no mistake, there are plenty of people who are just loving the conspiracy theory nonsense they can rehash as an excuse, when the truth is they are afraid of a little needle and think we can reach herd immunity without them. They care about their own health, the health of their families and their communities … they just want someone else to do something about it.

We can’t finish this battle if minds do not change on the matter.

Lives are still being lost. You can do something about it. Conquer your fears and get the shot.


West Virginians don’t always think about all the people and organizations quietly working behind the scene to make a difference — to improve our lives. An announcement this month from the state Department of Education reminds us those folks are everywhere.

Because of a partnership with the Marshall University June Harless Center and The Dollywood Foundation, the department is able to once again offer the West Virginia Blue Ribbon Book Club, through which public school students in grades 1 through 3 will receive books — 258,000 are being distributed through the end of July. Further, teachers will also get books that will help them develop lessons for the 2021-22 school year.

There are celebrity readers pitching in, too. Folks such as West Virginia University men’s basketball coach Bob Huggins and national champion Marshall men’s soccer coach Chris Grassie are part of the effort.

Kudos to those developing the partnerships that will make that difference for thousands of Mountain State kids. They and plenty of others don’t get enough credit for the work they do in their determination to help our state rise to its potential.


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