Critics pan Thanksgiving advice in New York Times that kids who aren’t fully vaccinated should ‘eat quickly’

An article for The New York Times offering advice on how to mitigate coronavirus risks at family Thanksgiving gatherings featured an expert calling on kids aren’t fully vaccinated to “eat quickly.”

“If our child, 9, and a cousin, 10, have each received one dose of the vaccine two weeks prior to Thanksgiving, is it safe for us to eat indoors? There will be about 20 guests, all vaccinated, and the 65 and older crowd have all received boosters,” one reader from San Francisco asked in the essay.

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“I’m glad to hear that the children and all guests are vaccinated. As the kids will not be fully vaccinated until two weeks after their second shot, I think some care is warranted, especially because some attendees are 65 and older and thus at greater risk of more serious breakthrough infections. You could have the kids wear masks, eat quickly and stay away from the older adults when eating,” Virginia Tech engineering professor Dr. Linsey Marr wrote in response. 

Children wear a masks and wait for U.S. President Joe Biden to visit her pre-Kindergarten class at East End Elementary School to highlight the early childhood education proposal in his Build Back Better infrastructure agenda in North Plainfield, New Jersey, U.S. October 25, 2021. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Children wear a masks and wait for U.S. President Joe Biden to visit her pre-Kindergarten class at East End Elementary School to highlight the early childhood education proposal in his Build Back Better infrastructure agenda in North Plainfield, New Jersey, U.S. October 25, 2021. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

According to The Times, Marr studies airborne transmission of viruses. 

Critics took to social media to blast the advice, with one describing it as “pure insanity,” and another suggesting people like Marr had “completely lost their minds.” 

FILE PHOTO: A child reacts while receiving a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine at Smoketown Family Wellness Center in Louisville, Kentucky, U.S., November 8, 2021. REUTERS/Jon Cherry/File Photo

FILE PHOTO: A child reacts while receiving a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine at Smoketown Family Wellness Center in Louisville, Kentucky, U.S., November 8, 2021. REUTERS/Jon Cherry/File Photo
(REUTERS/Jon Cherry/File Photo)

“Someone who tells my kids to eat quickly and remask will not have to see them at all because we ain’t coming,” wrote another critic. 

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“How about if you’re that worried, you don’t go to Thanksgiving since the whole point of the holiday is to break bread together,” wrote one critic, while another wrote, “I hope the kids don’t choke from eating too fast.”

FILE PHOTO: Pfizer/BioNTech's new pediatric COVID-19 vaccine vials are seen in this undated handout photo. Pfizer/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT/File Photo

FILE PHOTO: Pfizer/BioNTech’s new pediatric COVID-19 vaccine vials are seen in this undated handout photo. Pfizer/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT/File Photo
(Pfizer/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT/File Photo)

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), everyone eligible for the coronavirus vaccine should get vaccinated. All who are not fully vaccinated should wear a mask during indoor gatherings. Those who are fully vaccinated should also wear a mask indoors if in a community with substantial to high transmission of the coronavirus. 

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