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This week, Mary Holland, Children’s Health Defense (CHD) president, and Polly Tommey, co-producer of “Vaxxed,” cover the latest COVID headlines, including West Virginia Wesleyan College and its decision to fine unvaccinated students $750 for the fall semester and force them to pay for weekly COVID testing; a new study showing the most educated are the least likely to get the COVID vaccine; and Dr. Anthony Fauci’s claim that the spread of COVID in the unvaccinated will lead to more dangerous variants, even though experts argue the opposite is true.

Also on tap this week is a report that a Biden official said a new study suggesting Pfizer’s vaccine was only 42% effective against the Delta variant in July is a “wake up call,” plus news the European Union is looking into new side effects from mRNA COVID vaccines including a skin rash and two kidney disorders.

Mary and Polly also cover the Biden administration’s recommendation that all Americans get a booster shot, how U.S. regulators authorized a third dose of Pfizer and Moderna’s COVID vaccine for the immunocompromised, and a new study showing teenage boys are 14 times more likely to get myocarditis from Pfizer’s COVID jab.

Here are more of this week’s highlights:

  • In an exclusive interview with The Defender, the mother of a 14-year-old boy seriously injured by the COVID vaccine said before her son got the shot, she was led to believe his chance of suffering an adverse reaction was “one in a million.” Mary said, “These are likely permanent injuries. It’s so tragic because we know the likelihood is so remote that this 14-year-old would have had such serious complications from getting COVID.”
  • A new study says COVID vaccines in pregnant women lead to healthier births and babies. Polly said, “That’s a very dangerous article because we’re seeing the opposite.” Mary said, “To do a test on 2,000 people and then tell everyone to get it is so reckless.”
  • A dozen employment and labor experts told USA Today that workers fired for not getting the COVID vaccine will not be eligible for unemployment benefits. But there are some exceptions, and unemployment qualification is not the same in every state. “If 30% of people in a company are unvaccinated by the vaccine deadline, is the company really going to fire 30% of the people”? asked Mary.
  • San Francisco became the first major U.S. city to mandate proof of full vaccinations for certain indoor activities.
  • Los Angeles city council unanimously voted to approve a COVID vaccine mandate for indoor public spaces including gyms, restaurants, movie theaters and venues. “New York and California are two states that have led the charge on repelling religious and philosophical exemptions and now mandates, lockdowns and masks,” said Mary. “They’re true to form.”
  • California ordered all teachers to be vaccinated or face testing. The policy applies to staff members serving students K-12 and will have an Oct. 15 deadline for full compliance.
  • Oregon’s Gov. Kate Brown implemented a new statewide indoor mask mandate. Brown is also mandating COVID shots for all state employees by Oct. 18. Employees will not have the option of weekly testing instead of vaccination. “SEIU, the biggest healthcare workers union in the U.S., with 72,000 workers in Oregon, is demanding a bargaining over the mandate issue,” said Mary. “That’s very good news.”
  • The Pentagon released new religious exemption guidelines for the COVID vaccine. Service members who want a vaccine exemption will be required to seek counseling regarding their decision. Click here for an article by The Defender on how to get vaccine exemptions in the military. Mary said, “It’s not an easy path, but it does exist.”
  • A teenage boy from Singapore who suffered a heart attack six days after he received the second dose of Pfizer’s vaccine will receive $225,000.
  • 1 in 5 children aged 12-15 in Ireland have registered to receive a COVID shot. Parents will have to fill out and sign a lengthy consent form and say they have read and understood information about the vaccine, including very rare known side effects. “Do they know what they are signing?” asked Polly.
  • The entire state of New South Wales is under a seven-day lockdown with tough new rules. “Australia has been particularly vehement in this period of the lockdowns,” said Mary. “We’re creating a CHD Australia chapter. It’s very difficult to be an advocate in Australia. The conditions are harder than elsewhere.”
  • Reuters is now in the business of “fact-checking” Facebook and Twitter posts about COVID vaccines — despite having ties to Pfizer, World Economic Forum and Trusted News Initiative, an industry collaboration of major news and global tech organizations whose stated mission is to “combat spread of harmful vaccine disinformation.”
  • Two of Texas’ largest school districts are imposing mask requirements, defying Gov. Greg Abbott’s executive order that prohibits such mandates in schools. “Any parent who wants their kid to wear a mask, and the kid is willing to wear the mask, let the kid wear a mask,” said Mary. “Don’t force it on people who don’t want to wear it.”
  • Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee ordered schools to allow mask opt-outs for students.
  • An opinion piece by Suri Kinzbrunner in Newsweek said, “No, the unvaccinated aren’t selfish or ignorant.” The writer explains her decision to opt out of the COVID jab.
  • An opinion piece published by The Defender said thanks to vaccine mandates, segregation is making a comeback, and once again, Black Americans will suffer the most.
  • Representatives for Hawaii union members are taking legal action against the state’s COVID vaccine mandate. Approximately 1,200 first responders, including police officers and firefighters, are part of the class action lawsuit.
  • Teachers For Choice is organizing a New York Union for Choice protest on August 25 at 4 p.m. ET to fight back against employers that are mandating COVID shots. Teachers For Choice is an emergency union caucus comprised of teachers and parents who oppose medical mandates for any American, especially educators, as a condition of keeping their job.
  • CHD won a case against the Federal Communications Commission on safety guidelines for 5G and wireless. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit court ruled the FCC failed to provide a reasoned explanation for its determination that its current guidelines adequately protect against harmful effects of exposure to radiofrequency radiation.
  • Watch the film, “Vaxxed II: The People’s Truth,” for free via online streaming at CHD Live and sign up to participate in a live Q&A session today, Aug. 19 at 1 p.m. PT/4 p.m. ET. “The People’s Truth” is the sequel to “VAXXED: From Cover-up to Catastrophe,” the film that revealed the suppression of inconvenient truth in science and served as a harbinger of what was to come.
  • The Defender weekly newsletter is now available in four additional languages. Sign up for CHD news and updates here today.

Watch “This Week” with Mary + Polly: