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Average number of new Texas COVID-19 cases dropping: Report

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Over the past couple of weeks, the rolling average number of daily new COVID-19 cases in Texas has dropped by 42.5%, according to data from Johns Hopkins University, the Associated Press reported Monday.

This new data comes after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) made the decision last week to end the Lone Star State’s COVID-19 restrictions, including the mask mandate.

RELATED: Gov. Abbott labels Biden’s border policy ‘neanderthal thinking’

On Sunday, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) reported 2,347 new confirmed and probable coronavirus cases and 69 additional deaths, per the AP. Additionally, the DSHS stated that the number of hospitalizations has continued to decrease, down to 4,093.

As things currently stand, Texas—the second-most populous state—has the third-highest death toll from COVID-19 in the whole country, with 46,300 people having died from the virus there so far.

As far as inoculations are progressing, more than 2.8 million Texans—nearly 10% of the state—have completed their vaccinations, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),

Abbott shared the news to Twitter on Monday, and celebrated the dropping numbers.

MORE ON GOV. ABBOTT: Texas Gov. Abbott proposes legislation to ban social media censorship

“The Covid positivity rate continues to plummet; now down to 5.9%. That is the lowest in almost 10 months. Covid hospitalizations dropped below 4,000 for the first time in 5 months,” the governor posted. “Most importantly, Covid related fatalities today are the lowest reported this year.”

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Virginia Public Schools Reinstates Two Books Despite Complaints of Pedophilia and Pornography

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Fairfax

Fairfax County Public Schools has reinstated two books despite complaints from parents that the literature depicted and legitimized obscene and pedophilic material. Parents confronted the school board with the graphic images contained in the books beginning in September. Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) announced the books were restored to libraries after two committees reviewed them.

The books, “Lawn Boy” and “Gender Queer” have been determined by the District as helpful to the LGBTQ community. Fox News reports “Lawn Boy” by Jonathan Evison includes long sections of a boy reminiscing about explicit experiences he had at 10 years old. “Gender Queer: A Memoir” is by Maia Kobabe and includes photos of sexual acts between a boy and a man.

Virginia mother and president of Parents Defending Education, Nicole Nelly, told Fox News last week, “It’s appalling that Fairfax County’s response to parental feedback is to quibble over the definition of ‘pedophilia’ and to shame and denigrate families who are concerned about this material.”

“By attempting to normalize this content – and reinstating these books under cover of darkness right before Thanksgiving break – FCPS has demonstrated that in their eyes, parental input is a bug, not a feature, in the system” added Nelly.

In an interview with Fox News, Stacy Langton, one of the mothers who first confronted the school board, says “plenty” of Democrats and liberals are also calling her to say they “don’t want their kids exposed to this in school…this is FCPS coming out and explicitly saying they are in favor of porn in schools for your children.”

FCPS, however, claims that two committees comprised of school administrators, librarians, parents, and students determined that the books did not contain pedophilia, nor did they violate regulations by including obscene material.

“The decision reaffirms FCPS’s ongoing commitment to provide diverse reading materials that reflect on our student population, allowing every child an opportunity to see themselves reflected in literary characters” said FCPS in a released statement.

“Both reviews concluded that the books were valuable in their potential to reach marginalized youth who may struggle to find relatable literary characters that reflect their personal journeys” the statement continued.

Michael Sabbeth, Colorado attorney and author of “The Good, The Bad & The Difference: How to Talk With Children About Values” says “the Board’s assertion cleverly employs a logical fallacy—a strawman argument.”

While the board’s “refutation alleges the material affirms students with ‘marginalized identities’ and acknowledges the ‘difficulties nonbinary and asexual individuals may face’, their justification ignores and fails to negate allegations of obscenity, pornography and or pedophilia” states Sabbeth.

“Ironically, the Board’s justification demeans those it alleges to support. If, for example, pedophilia is in a book, arguing it helps youngsters is morally beneath contempt. To virtuously support those individuals, the Board need do no more than advance this unambiguous message: Treat all people respectfully” Sabbeth concludes.

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