Brooks: CDC Thinks about Health, Not ‘Overall Flourishing’ – It’s ‘Worth It’ to Loosen Mask Rules


On Friday’s “PBS NewsHour,” New York Times columnist David Brooks said that the CDC and health officials are primarily tasked with health, but governors have to balance “the overall flourishing of their communities.” And that in areas where Omicron has declined, “it’s worth it to take some of the psychic pressure off and loosen some of the mask restrictions.”

Brooks said, “I understand where the CDC and some of the scientists are coming from. They have — their primary responsibility is to guard the nation’s health. And they see 2,500 people still dying every day. They see high hospitalization rates, and they say, it’s too soon. On the other hand, the governors have a couple of responsibilities. One is to preserve the health, but the other is the overall flourishing of their communities. And if you look — what’s striking, in looking at the polling data, is just how much the Delta and then Omicron have dealt a psychic blow to people. People are exhausted. They’re convinced Omicron is never going to go away, we’re going to have to live with COVID. And they want some piece — some version of their old life back. Now, a rising number of people think it’ll never come back. But, in my view, and it should be local by local, but we’re sitting here in D.C., in the Washington area. We’ve seen Omicron up and Omicron way down. I think in communities with that kind of situation, it’s worth it to take some of the psychic pressure off and loosen some of the mask restrictions.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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