Editor’s note: This editorial expresses the views of the Log Cabin Democrat editorial board, which is composed of Frank Leto, Jeanette Anderton and Alex Kienlen.

On Thursday, the state administered its one millionth COVID-19 vaccine during a special event at the State Capitol. A Shorter College student received the millionth dose, which was administered by the nurse who received the first dose in Arkansas.

As of Friday morning, the Arkansas Department of Health reports 1,599,699 doses have been given in the state.

That’s exciting news. However, the governor and Secretary of Health Dr. Jose Romero said that some people are not getting their second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, which is concerning.

Experts say that although people have some protection from the virus after the first dose of Moderna or Pfizer vaccine – the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that participants in the trials showed to have about 50 percent protection from the virus after one dose but between 90-95 percent protection level after the second dose – people should receive both doses.

“The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine and Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine both need two shots in order to get the most protection,” the CDC said.

Conway got some great news this week with the announcement that Toad Suck Daze will return to some in-person events for this year’s 40th annual festival. The events will be spread out over about six weeks. Though we are not quite ready to return to the three-day event that draws a crowd of 100,000 to downtown Conway, the Log Cabin appreciates all the thought and hard work the Conway Area Chamber of Commerce and partners put into making this year’s festival the best it can safely be. We are “toadally” looking forward to it.

In national news, we were proud of the jury in Minnesota for finding former police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of all charges in the killing of George Floyd. We think the jury was right to convict on all three counts and that justice was served in this case. Again, we have a long road to go but this was a promising first step.

Speaking of long roads to go, the Log Cabin Democrat kicked off its series on food insecurity this week. If you haven’t done so already, we invite you to read the front-page story which highlights the significant impact the pandemic had on food insecurity in Arkansas and how the Arkansas Foodbank stepped up its operations in 2020.

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