Some Garden State residents are losing patience with those who still will not get vaccinated, expressing frustration and anger that masking, social distance and capacity limit restrictions may be reinstated by Gov. Phil Murphy if pandemic metrics continue to get worse.

As the highly contagious Delta variant continues to surge in New Jersey, state officials are reporting another 227 COVID infections, with 312 people hospitalized, 58 in the ICU with four additional deaths.

During the latest COVID update on Monday in Trenton, as the governor continued to urge the unvaccinated to roll up their sleeves and get the shot, he said he understands why those who have been vaccinated are upset.

“I don’t blame people for feeling that way who have been vaccinated. I don’t blame them at all,” he said. “It’s my hope that they will help me in whatever way they can influence the folks who are not yet vaccinated to get vaccinated.”

He said there are some legitimate reasons why some individuals are still hesitant to get the vaccine, including prior problems with allergies or medical conditions, and those in communities of color, because of the history of the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, where treatment was withheld from about 600 Black participants.

“But there’s multiples of those populations of people listening to myths, listening to garbage that are just not fact-based and they need to be called out," he said. "This thing (the vaccine) works and it’s safe.”

Murphy said this is a very big deal “because that’s our one ticket to making sure we don’t have to go back to the masking, social distancing shutting stuff down."

The governor stressed the new COVID infection and hospitalization numbers continue to be driven by the unvaccinated.

“Get vaccinated and help us continue to restore our state’s economy while you get the added protection against COVID that is needed to end this pandemic once and for all," he said.

You can contact reporter David Matthau at

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