BOSTON (LifeSiteNews) — In yet another sign of the public’s exhaustion with restrictions, the left-wing enclave of Boston, Massachusetts, is one of the latest major cities to drop its COVID-19 vaccine mandate for businesses.
Democrat Mayor Michelle Wu made the announcement Friday that customers would no longer be required to show proof of vaccination for entry, effective immediately. The local mask mandate remains in effect, but city health officials say that will be reviewed next.
“We took down the mandate posters, we told our staff. It’s one less thing we have to manage on a day-to-day basis. We can focus on our guests. It’s so uplifting to hear these things,” Casey Furtaw of area restaurant Sonsie told CBS Boston.
“I think it’s good for people to feel like progress is being made,” Mark Erelli added. “If certain benchmarks are met than I think it’s good for constraints to change. Otherwise, it begins to feel like what can we possibly do to get beyond this?”
CBS reports that Boston “has a 4.0% community positivity rate; 90.7% occupancy rate of adult ICU beds, and a 7-day average of adult COVID-19 hospitalizations at 195.9 per day.” The city says almost 72% of the population is “fully vaccinated,” higher than the national rate.
Many Americans continue to harbor serious reservations as to the COVID vaccines’ safety, stemming in large part from the rushed nature of their creation. The Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed initiative developed and released the shots in a tenth of the time vaccine development usually takes and a quarter of the time it took the previous record-holder, the mumps vaccine, yet their advocates have done little to address the concerns of the hesitant.
During a COVID-19 vaccine hearing held by US Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) last month, attorney Thomas Renz presented medical billing data from the Pentagon’s Defense Medical Epidemiology Database (DMED) showing that 2021 saw drastic spikes in a variety of diagnoses for serious medical issues over the previous five-year average, including hypertension (2,181%), neurological disorders (1,048%), multiple sclerosis (680%), Guillain-Barre syndrome (551%), breast cancer, 487%), female infertility (472%), pulmonary embolism (468%), migraines (452%), ovarian dysfunction (437%), testicular cancer (369%), and tachycardia (302%).
In a statement to left-wing “fact-checking” outlet PolitiFact, the Defense Health Agency’s Armed Forces Surveillance Division spokesman Peter Graves confirmed the existence of the records but claimed that a conveniently-timed “data corruption” glitch made the pre-2021 numbers appear far lower than the actual numbers of cases for those years, which PolitiFact took at face value.
Meanwhile, data indicates that widespread dissemination of the COVID vaccines has failed to end the pandemic. The federal government considers more than 214 million Americans (over 64% of the eligible) to be “fully vaccinated” (a moving target given the vaccines’ temporary nature), yet data from Johns Hopkins University reported last October shows that more Americans died of COVID-19 by that point in 2021 (353,000) than in all of 2020 (352,000). The Moderna vaccine has been available throughout all of 2021; the Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson shots were made available in late February.
Wu’s decision comes shortly after a Massachusetts judge blocked COVID vaccine mandates for city employees, and continues a trend of Democrats retreating from the stringent pandemic policies that until recently distinguished them from Republicans.
Only seven states (plus the District of Columbia and several U.S. territories) still have statewide mask mandates. Numerous left-wing figures have claimed that evolving scientific knowledge has justified the change, but critics suspect the real deciding factor was internal polling, such as that conducted by New Jersey Democrat Gov. Phil Murphy’s team, indicating that forced masking is deeply unpopular.