The state of Missouri decided to “reopen for business” even though the number of cases is increasing. In fact, they are now setting record highs for new cases of COVID-19. At a press briefing on Tuesday, the Republican governor was asked if he “felt guilty” for relaxing restrictions in the state during a coronavirus spike. He said “no”.
I don’t know that any one person is responsible for that no more than anybody else standing out here in this hallway. Do I feel guilty because we have car accidents, and people die every day? No, I don’t feel guilty about that. Each person that gets in those situations, things happen like that in life, they do.
There are so many things wrong with this:
- Car accidents are not contagious. COVID-19 is extremely contagious. If there were 10 car accidents one week, and 1000 the next week, and 10000 the week after, would the governor be so flippant and refuse to do something?
- We have stop signs and traffic lights to force distancing between cars.
- We DO force people take measures to fight car accidents. We require people to wear seat belts, which are just as awkward and uncomfortable as masks. If people don’t wear a seat belt, we fine them and often force them to go to a class to educate them, including making them watch movies showing gruesome car accidents. By that token, we should require people who are caught not wearing a mask to watch movies of people dying from the coronavirus.
- If a young person is a passenger in a car but isn’t wearing their seat belt, the driver still gets the ticket.
- We have plenty of laws and regulations to make automobiles safer, including standards for crash avoidance, crash worthiness, and post-crash survivability.
- We have laws against driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- We punish people for causing car accidents, convicting them of vehicular homicide (manslaughter). If someone negligently transmits the coronavirus, causing someone (or dozens of people) to die, how is that different?
If he wants to compare the pandemic to car accidents, why is he ignoring all of these comparisons? I guess it is because even though Republicans claim to be the party of personal responsibility, they don’t seem to think that applies to themselves.