A tale of two New Jerseys (Opinion)
If you go into many stores and supermarkets in New Jersey, you will see most people wearing masks indoors. It's not a rule. It's not even suggested by most of the stores where you see people in masks. Some stores in more rural and sparsely populated areas will have almost no one wearing a mask. Of course, the vast majority of the mask wearers are most likely vaccinated. Most of the people that we've heard of in the last month that have come down with COVID are fully vaccinated.
As soon as the mask mandate in public places was removed, everyone I know was happy to put the mask away and go about as they'd always wanted to. Yet, with the Delta spike this summer and news of many "breakthrough" cases among the vaccinated, the masks came out again. Even though 72% of eligible people in New Jersey have at least one shot and 64% are fully vaccinated, the fear persists.
It's an interesting dichotomy. In my circle, most have avoided the shot if they could, without getting fired or refused access to education. We haven't skipped a beat when it comes to travel, holiday gatherings, handshaking, hugging, kissing, and living as we always did. We also think Dr. Fauci is a fraud, while the other side thinks he's the second coming of Jesus. When the vast majority of masked shoppers at Target see me without a mask, I wonder what they think.
I sure wonder what they're thinking about going around with a mask on now that their miracle vaccine has already been injected into their bloodstreams. We have one part of the population that is still living in fear and trepidation, while the others take the necessary lifestyle choices and precautions to keep our health strong. From what you can observe out in public, it sure looks like the people still living in fear outnumber us crazy, reckless yet well-informed and rational citizens. It's mind-boggling to me and I'm sure my behavior is to them.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy. Any opinions expressed are Dennis Malloy's own.