Just left a consignment store after dropping off some outgrown baby stuff—all clothes are quarantined for seven(!!) days.

I asked the owner. “Nobody wants their sweet baby to get covid.”

Does this level of widespread misinformation on mechanism of spread exist outside of SF?
We were having this conversation indoors, doors and windows closed. 🙃
I just don’t know how we move on from here. At this point, the stuff we have stuck with is so ingrained. It’s ritual, like a rain dance.

Let alone the lack of perspective regarding relative risk vis à vis the burden undertaken to mitigate that risk.
San Francisco has over 70% vaccine uptake, and has among the lowest case rates in the nation. And yet.

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More from @bergerbell

30 Apr
Such a good question! On the philosophy side: our incredibly dumb and getting dumber discourse as simulation/hyperreality (Baudrillard); a pathologizing trajectory post-enlightenment (Foucault); hubris of man over nature and iatrogenesis (Illich); the state of exception...
...vis à vis controlling bodies (Agamben); the banality of evil (Arendt); “control society” (Deleuze).

On the sociology-adjacent side, but really as catch-all for the rest: the brittleness of scientific institutions and the concept of paradigm shift (Kuhn);...
...manufacturing consent (Chomsky), which in this case has become autonomous as part of our outrage economy (Taibbi); your pick of some historical materialist class analysis (take your pick!) to explain the political economy part (plus Turchin and Gurri to update it);...
Read 5 tweets
30 Apr
On epistemic humility...

It’s clear that we don’t fully understand exactly the timing of these waves around the country and the world. Seasonality, stochasticity, NPIs, sure, but... there’s obviously unknown exogenous factors influencing specific intervals across geographies.
And yet there are a number of factors—political, professional, social—in not publicly broadcasting this. That we really just don’t know for certain. I wish it was more acceptable to admit that all existing explanations fall short. That uncertainty, confusion are OK. (Good, even!)
Anyway, I hope when consensus coalesces around explanatory variables in 90 years, it’s not only entirely outside of our paradigm but also really, really stupid.

Like, semi-predictable regional waves are instigated by an increase in seasonally-shed cat dander. Or the moon!
Read 4 tweets
29 Apr
I can’t ignore the sense of unreality that I feel as I contemplate the change in my politics. “Did I move, or has the left? Has my ideology shifted, or has theirs?”

This past year has been such a revelation. A falling of scales from the eyes, I guess.
I now recognize tools of shame and control, the authoritarian framework of many politics (not necessarily the ideology, but the application) of the contemporary left. Progressivism as a culture of conformity, the intolerance for anything outside of a narrow spectrum of opinion.
Why didn't I see it before? I think, maybe, because I was (and still am) invested in fighting for the underdog, in ensuring fairness and justice and all that good stuff. I just thought the right was the enforcer of that oppression. (They still are, but through a different mode.)
Read 6 tweets
28 Apr
This is austerity being sold as public health.

CUNY will continue to be mostly remote in Fall 2021. Their reopening timeline is absolutely stunning:

citytech.cuny.edu/reopening/city…
In Fall 2021, “in response to the COVID-19 pandemic” at CUNY:

“Areas such as the Library, Learning Centers, Computer Labs and Cafeterias will not be opened. Additionally, extracurricular activities are not planned for the Fall.”

“Lounges and other gathering spaces closed.”
Fall 2022 campus reopening plans at CUNY: “Strict adherence to social distancing and masking.”
Read 7 tweets
27 Apr
A lot of the CDC decisions—the really nonsensical stuff where toddlers, but not vaccinated adults, must continue wearing masks outdoors—make more sense when viewed through the lens of a professionalization-driven quest to neatly “complete” the pandemic. Tie it off with a bow.
The pandemic will end in the US through vaccination. It’s a miracle of human ingenuity. I am so grateful.

Yet wholly defanging the virus in a population through widespread vaccination of the at-risk isn’t enough. This is Fauci’s white whale.
Until vaccines are available for the youngest kids, I’m not sure the CDC will insinuate that it’s “OK” to accept a non-zero number of cases by dropping all NPIs.

Despite covid being less of a risk to them than other ambient risks readily accepted without hesitation pre-2020.
Read 4 tweets
27 Apr
I, too, want to understand a bit more what’s happening in SF and a few other places—the high concentration of IRL friends paralyzed by covid concerns, even post-vaccination.

I have a very close friend who is a pediatric OT and works with children with motor delays... 1/🧵
A majority of her patients will still only do OT sessions over Zoom, saying their kids can’t resume in-person therapy until they themselves (the kids) are vaccinated. This didn’t surprise me; I live here.

When I told this to another friend, a teacher in TX, she was floored. 2/
I don’t think we’ve gotten a handle around just how geographically-dependent the median covid response is. And how differently the average person has internalized the pandemic threat, depending on where they live.

So why is that? 3/
Read 4 tweets

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