During his Tuesday State of the Union Address, President Joe Biden urged Americans to end the political divisions that have been heightened by COVID-19 protocols and requirements.
As COVID-19 cases are down by 59 percent in the last two weeks, Biden said the time has approached for life to resume as normal in the country.
“We’ve lost so much in COVID-19 – time with one another and, worst of all, much loss of life. Let’s use this moment to reset,” Biden commented. “So stop looking at COVID as a partisan dividing line. See it for what it is: A God-awful disease. Let’s stop seeing each other as enemies and start seeing each other for who we are: fellow Americans.”
The president continued, “We can end the shutdown of schools and businesses. We have the tools we need. It’s time for America to get back to work and fill our great downtowns again with people. People working from home can feel safe again to return to their offices.”
Not many other issues have divided Americans more than the in-person education at many of the nation’s public schools as well as mask mandates for students and staff members that have gone with the return to classes in some states.
Biden was just as optimistic on those issues as well: “Our schools are open. Let’s keep it that way. Our kids need to be in school,” he said, a comment that received a standing ovation from members of each party.
He added, “With 75 percent of adult Americans fully vaccinated and hospitalizations down by 77 percent, most Americans can remove their masks and stay in the classroom and move forward safely.”
Biden still encouraged citizens to receive their vaccines against the coronavirus, and he noted that he had bought “more [antiviral] pills than anyone in the world has” for Americans. “Pfizer is working overtime to get us a million pills this month and more than double that next month.”
Even with all the progress, the president did not declare victory over the pandemic that has claimed the lives of over 950,000 Americans and infected more than 75 million. “I can’t promise a new variant won’t come, but I can promise you we’ll do everything in our power to be ready if it does,” he said.
ARTICLE: ELIZABETH HERTZBERG
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: YAHOO NEWS