The U.S. will narrowly miss President Biden’s July 4 vaccination goal but the country is still in a far better position than July 4, 2020.


We heard Dr. Frederick caution, wait, wait; we’re not post-pandemic, but our own Ron Elving wants us to think about how far we’ve come. The last time July Fourth arrived, he writes this weekend, it was hard to find much to celebrate. Ron Elving is NPR’s senior Washington editor and correspondent, and he joins us now. Good morning, Ron.

RON ELVING, BYLINE: Good morning, Leila.

FADEL: So you’ve been taking stock. We just heard from a part of the country that, frankly, isn’t doing so well. What’s your feeling about where the country is this Independence Day weekend compared to July 4, 2020?

ELVING: Sadly, that depends on which country you’re referring to. Unfortunately, we seem to be more than one country these days, in some ways,…

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