The Atlantic Daily: What Comes After Kid Vaccines?

And other pandemic plot lines.

The Atlantic "A" on an envelopeAnd other pandemic plot lines
The Atlantic

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What comes after kid vaccines?

The White House can almost cross another task off its pandemic to-do list: Kids’ vaccines are on track to hit pharmacies and pediatrician’s offices as early as this week. We’re just waiting for sign-off from CDC director Rochelle Walensky. The shots offer an additional way to protect both kids and their families and could help reduce overall transmission of the coronavirus.

So where exactly does this put us in our fight against the virus? Up to now, President Joe Biden has used a throw-spaghetti-at-the-wall approach to getting the pandemic under control. The whole project has gotten a little messy. We need clearer goals as a country, my colleague Sarah Zhang argues.

  • America has lost the pandemic plot. We defaulted to talking about kid vaccines because they were next on the agenda. Now “the path ahead is not just unclear; it’s nonexistent,” Sarah explains. “We are meandering around the woods because we don’t know where to go.”

  • Speaking of kid vaccines: Why are they dosed so differently? “The goal is to get the shot to be not just kid-size, but kid-friendly, which means finagling a whole slew of factors, ” Katherine J. Wu explains.

Are you a parent looking for practical advice? Katie answered five questions about the kid-vaccine rollout here.

The rest of the news in three sentences:

(1) President Biden scolded Russia and China for not attending the COP26 climate summit. (2) Facebook is shutting down its facial-recognition system and deleting a decade’s worth of data. (3) It’s Election Day 2021—more on that below.

One question, answered: It’s Election Day 2021. What should I watch for?

Russell Berman, who covers politics, shares his plan:

Like most political junkies, the first race I’ll be watching is the governor’s race in Virginia, where the Democrat Terry McAuliffe is trying to hold off the Republican Glenn Youngkin. The big questions are whether Democratic voters can muster anywhere close to the turnout levels they saw when Donald Trump was in the White House, and whether, with Trump out of office, suburban voters swing back to the GOP. I’ll also keep an eye on New Jersey, where Governor Phil Murphy, a Democrat, is running for a second term. He’s heavily favored to win, but if he loses, it would signal a horrible political environment for Democrats.

Today’s Atlantic-approved activity:

“Soft-launch” your partner on Instagram. Or at least learn the slang: Our technology staff writer Kaitlyn Tiffany explains the new social-media public-relations strategy.

A break from the news:

Root canals are no longer terrible.


Every weekday evening, our editors guide you through the biggest stories of the day, help you discover new ideas, and surprise you with moments of delight. Subscribe to get this delivered to your inbox.