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'As a Victim ...' 

Editor:

In your recently published article about the 840 new cases of COVID-19 in Humboldt County ("Public Health Confirms 840 New COVID-19 Cases, Three Hospitalizations," posted online Jan. 18), you linked to an article written by Calmatters and published by the North Coast Journal and other California newspapers on Jan. 8 called "Unboosted: California COVID-19 Booster Rate Falls Below 40% in Most Counties." In my opinion, this article is highly offensive and you should not have linked to it. In my opinion, the North Coast Journal should avoid using the term "Unboosted" because it is offensive. This is why:

As an unvaccinated person, I have endured over a year of harassment by Humboldt County's local news media. The harassment came in the form of articles and political cartoons calling me a monster, insinuating I did not believe in science, insinuating I believed the Earth was flat, calling my boyfriend a wimp because he was unvaccinated, and a political cartoon likely directed at me personally portraying unvaccinated people as overweight men who also believe cell phone towers are dangerous, genetically modified food is dangerous and water fluoridation is dangerous, among other things.

As a victim of said nasty smear campaign against Humboldt County's unvaccinated citizens, I was absolutely appalled when I woke up in the morning and read the North Coast Journal as I do every morning, and I saw the "unboosted" article. The "unboosted" article is highly offensive because it appears to be the beginning of a similar smear campaign being launched against the fully vaccinated, who are now going to be labeled "the unboosted" and grouped in with the formerly hated "unvaccinated."

I feel truly sorry for anyone who thought they were doing their part by protecting themselves or others, who got "fully vaccinated" with a vaccine that now no longer works, who is now being told they will need a third dose, who woke up in the morning and read the "unboosted" article like I did. To them, that must've seemed like a metaphorical "slap in the face." I prefer the term "bait and switch."

The North Coast Journal should apologize for publishing the "unboosted" article, stop linking to it, and stop using the term "unboosted."

Adrienne Floreen, McKinleyville

Editor's note: Contrary to this letter writer's assertion, data continues to show COVID-19 vaccines remain effective at preventing severe illness and death, especially among those who have been both fully vaccinated and received a third "booster" dose, as the referenced CalMatters article reports.

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