While the vaccination rate has picked up overall, one subset of the American populace is refusing COVID jabs en masse. Per CNN, nearly 40 percent of the US Marine Corps members have refused their vaccinations. Numbers released by the USMC on Thursday show that around 75,500 Marines have received vaccines, while 48,000 have chosen not to: a rejection rate of 38.9 percent. At North Carolina's Camp Lejeune, the rejection rate was even higher, at 57 percent. USMC spokesman Capt. Andrew Wood told the Hill that most of the men and women who've declined are "young and healthy" and noted several reasons outside of vaccine hesitancy.
USMC officials say Marines may decline in order to allow others to receive a vaccine first, because they may prefer to wait until it becomes mandatory, because they've received a shot from outside the military, or because they may be allergic. However, spokeswoman Col. Kelly Frushour stressed in a statement that "building vaccine confidence" is key to fighting the pandemic. (Read more coronavirus vaccine stories.)