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May 17, 2021 (Children’s Health Defense) — Bill Maher and eight Yankees players this week joined the ranks of COVID breakthrough cases — people who tested positive for the virus despite being fully vaccinated.

tweet from the official “Real Time with Bill Maher” account announced the 65-year-old comedian tested positive for COVID. The political humorist said he “feels fine” but decided to halt the taping of his talk show “Real Time with Bill Maher” on Friday.

No other staff or crew members on the program have tested positive, the outlet reports.

The news comes hours after New York Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torres became the latest member of the team to test positive for COVID. Torres is one of eight members of the New York Yankees who tested positive for the virus despite being vaccinated with Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J) vaccine, the baseball team said Thursday.

The eight infected Yankees include coaches, staff members and a player. Seven do not have symptoms, said Jason Zillo, the team’s vice president of communications. Only third base coach Phil Nevin showed symptoms, Zillo said. He is now feeling better.

At least 85% of the team had been vaccinated as of April 30, in an effort to ease clubhouse restrictions and mask-wearing protocols under MLB rules — meaning the team no longer had to wear masks in dugouts and bullpens. Restrictions during road trips also were loosened.

“While there have been anecdotal reports of New Yorkers who have had a positive COVID test 14 or more days after receiving their last vaccine dose, DOH is investigating those cases along with the ones linked to the Yankees further to determine if they meet the formal CDC definition of vaccine breakthrough,” a New York State Department of Health representative said in a statement.

As The Defender reported May 7, as more reports surfaced of breakthrough COVID cases, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced it will change how breakthrough cases are reported, effective May 14.

Previous to the CDC’s new changes, a breakthrough case was recorded if a person tested positive for SARS-Cov-2 two weeks after receiving the single-dose J&J shot or completing the two-dose Moderna or Pfizer vaccination.

Under the new criteria, the agency said as of May 14, only those breakthrough cases resulting in hospitalization or death will be reported.

The CDC also lowered the testing threshold for the fully vaccinated, which will result in fewer positive tests.

Under the new CDC criteria, none of the Yankees or Bill Maher will be included in the CDC’s reports of breakthrough infection.

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Powerful nations of the world, including China, the UK, and Canada are discussing plans to require so-called 'vaccine passports' as a condition for travel, and possibly to restrict entry to shopping and entertainment venues.

Israel has already put in place a system to discriminate against those who choose not to take the COVID vaccine, and, in the United States, Joe Biden has signed a new executive order which could pave the way for the implementation of a 'vaccine passport' system. [See more below.]

This kind of medical dictatorship must be resisted, and therefore, we must act quickly before these authoritarian notions take root and spread!

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition to SAY NO to government 'vaccine passports.' Tell your legislators to respect your freedom not to vaccinate without fear of repercussion.

People should not have to live in fear of government retribution for refusing a vaccine which is being rushed to market by Big Pharma and their fellow-travelers in NGOs, like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

It would be intolerable and immoral for the government to coerce someone, and their family, to take a COVID vaccine against their will just so they can do their weekly grocery shopping, go to a high school soccer game, travel on public transport, or visit their relatives who live in a different part of the country, or overseas.

Medical freedom must be respected in principle and also in practice.

So, it is now time that our policy-makers listen to all voices involved in this vital conversation, and start to represent those who will not tolerate being punished, restricted, or tracked for refusing an experimental vaccine.

Simply put, legislatures must begin to act as legislatures again.

Questions must be asked. Hearings and investigations must be held. And, the legislatures of each state and country must return to the business of representing the people who voted for them, assuming their rightful place as the originator of legislation.

We will no longer accept the dictates of executive branches without question. And, neither can we accept the dictates of some doctors who seem detached from reality and from science.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition which asks national political leaders (as well as state and provincial legislators in the U.S. and Canada) to pledge to respect the rights of those who refuse a COVID vaccine, and NOT introduce 'vaccine passports,' or any other system which would discriminate on the basis of taking the COVID vaccine.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

'Biden executive order directs government to evaluate ‘feasibility’ of vaccine passports' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/biden-executive-order-directs-government-to-evaluate-feasibility-of-vaccine-passports

'China lobbies WHO to develop COVID vaccine passports for all nations' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/china-lobbies-who-to-develop-covid-vaccine-passports-for-all-nations

'UK advances plans for vaccine passports to travel, enter stores' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/uk-advances-plans-for-vaccine-passports-to-travel-enter-stores

'Canada’s health minister: Gov’t ‘working on the idea of vaccine passports’' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/canadas-health-minister-govt-working-on-the-idea-of-vaccine-passports

'European Commission president plans to introduce vaccine passports' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/european-commission-president-plans-to-introduce-vaccine-passports

'Israel’s ‘Green Passport’ vaccination program has created a ‘medical Apartheid,’ distraught citizens say' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/israels-green-passport-vaccination-program-has-created-a-medical-apartheid-distraught-citizens-say

'LA schools to track every kid using Microsoft’s ‘Daily Pass’ COVID app' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/la-schools-to-track-every-kid-using-microsofts-daily-pass-covid-app

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As of April 26, the CDC reported 9,245 people had tested positive for COVID at least two weeks after getting their final COVID vaccination. About 9%, or 835, people required hospitalization and 132 died. Of the hospitalized patients, 241 were said to be asymptomatic or having an illness not related to COVID, and 20 deaths were reported as asymptomatic or not related to the disease.

The latest numbers are from 46 U.S. states and territories. It’s not clear which four states didn’t submit breakthrough case figures to the CDC.

According to the CDC, actual vaccine breakthrough numbers are likely higher as the surveillance system is passive and relies on voluntary reporting from state health departments. In addition, some breakthrough cases will not be identified due to lack of testing. This is particularly true in instances of asymptomatic or mild illness, the CDC said.

As reported May 11, The Defender contacted the CDC to inquire into why the agency altered the way it counts COVID breakthrough cases, to explain the effect this will have on breakthrough numbers and how the CDC can monitor vaccine efficacy if it excludes breakthrough cases that do not result in hospitalization or death.

We also asked why the CDC changed the testing threshold for the fully vaccinated and what effect this change will have on breakthrough case numbers.

To date, the CDC has not responded to our repeated inquiries.

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