ABC 3 Las Vegas coverage
Hundreds of people turned out in three locations to protest the lockdown of Nevada. This was part of "Operation Nevada" lead by the group Reopen Nevada Group. I have no idea who/what that group is. What's clear is they're mad that Sisolak has not committed to following the Trump Administration guidelines to re-open the economy.
A lot of people turned out and it's great to see people questioning the lockdown and exercising their constitutional rights. As Americans, we have a right to do this and must do this in a time when such rights are being challenged by the government. The follow-on effects of a shuttered world under government edict is a valid concern.
Starting a new Greater Depression over this and the social/emotional price we're paying isn't worth minimizing casualties. That is at the heart of what these nationwide protests are asking for. Americans are asking for the one-size fits-all solution to be lifted in favor of something a little smarter and for the ability to make their own decisions. Liberty, after all, is a risky proposition.
However, we cannot call for a return to normal simply because of anti-authoritarianism or a desire for profit/personal pleasure. Nor can we dismiss the threat of the coronavirus because of ignorance, because we feel safe and want to go back to normal, or because we simply think the government/media is lying to us. That is stupid.
There is a happy middle-ground between the two, but first a thought.
People should be wearing masks in these photos. Why? First, it takes away ammo from people who are going to yell and scream about the people infecting each other. Second, it keeps people from potentially infecting each other as they are quite close together in some cases (though outdoor transmission seems unlikely).
Third, by wearing masks it sends the message that the protesters are taking the threat from the virus as seriously as they take their rights. We can responsibly re-open the country and that is through voluntary mass wearing of masks (mandatory in the case of businesses open to the public). For every necessary restriction, there is almost always a reasonable alternative to a clampdown.
For many reasons, we cannot maintain a long-term lockdown. This kind of shutdown of the world will result in widespread rebellion, if not an outright insurrection, in a few more months. We've bought time and flattened the curve. It's time to pull back from the knee-jerk reaction and be more sensible about our restrictions.
I see a lot of friends criticizing the virus as not deadly and the shutdown measures as stupid. Yes, some of the measures are stupid and poorly thought out with little evidence or reasoning to support them.
Wearing a mask is not stupid (indoors at least). Keeping the casinos closed a bit longer is probably a good idea. The virus is more deadly than the nay-sayers believe. No, it's not just the flu. Influenza doesn't have a case fatality rate of 4%. Yes, young, healthy people are dying of COVID-19. This is virus is dangerous and if you don't believe it you're and idiot and I can't help you.
That being said, you can hold two conflicting ideas in your head. For instance, this isn't the Ebola virus. You can admit that the virus is dangerous and the media isn't just over-hyping it. I get my information from alternative news sources run by intelligent people (no Alex Jones) and think critically about it. Those people are worried and regularly call out the mainstream media for panicking people.
We should be protecting society by taking extraordinary measures and everyone wearing masks, but that doesn't mean government didn't overreact. We're right to question the reaction and demand less-restrictive alternatives. In a free country, we're free to take risks. If this is a war against the virus, we will take casualties. As Americans, we're willing to accept that for freedom.
We'll probably loose 200,000 people by the time this is over if we do everything right. There will be a second wave. All these things don't mean we have to accept 2 million or more dead or put life on hold for two years. I can wear a mask when I shop or buy dinner and still demand that the beaches and national parks re-open.
On Saturday, that was what Nevadans were asking for. Sisolak can lift and modify parts of the shutdown order. If bloggers can propose solutions that protect people but still let business and life go on, surely actual doctors, epidemiologists, and emergency operations planners can figure something out with the science they have access to.
Government control is all about taking the easiest, safest way out. That's why government loves gun control; if no one can own a gun, everyone with a gun is a criminal and they can be punished. The easiest, safest way out is also often the worst and heaviest handed on. We could have nuked Afghanistan and called it a day, but we didn't, and that's a great analogy because going full-bore "Democracy building" has wasted tons of American lives and treasure.
The further this lockdown goes on with no regard to science or the feelings of the people, the further disconnect between government and people will grow. Should this across-the-board policy continue, people will begin to just ignore the ban altogether.