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Virus: More data, more good decisions

by Jim Cook
| August 6, 2020 1:00 AM

After reading Jennifer Drake’s “My Turn” article Aug. 1, I felt compelled to respond.

She begins by saying public health policy should not be dictated by an ill-informed public. I agree. Then why aren’t we being better informed? I believe we need as much information as possible because I DON’T believe any politician or Panhandle Health member cares more about my safety and well being than I do.

Toward that end we need to know not only how many cases there are but also their severity, outcome, length of hospital stay, any additional health conditions (comorbidities) of those with negative outcomes, type and success of treatment, ages and any other pertinent information. I would also like to know the overall fatality rate, percentage of deaths versus total cases, also broken down by the above categories. This information would aid in our individual decision making. Knowledge and information is power. As we have seen, so is withholding knowledge and information.

Ms. Drake goes on to state the onus is on our elected officials, with which I also agree but the problem lies in the fact NOT ONE member of the Panhandle Health board which handed down this mandate has ever been voted in by the electorate. Not one.

Ms. Drake then bemoans that people not wearing masks are ruining her business. Just this morning I tried to purchase a very common service which I will not name so they avoid a visit from the mask police. No masks were being worn by anyone, either employee or customer. I would have needed to wait far longer than I usually need to because of the long line so I went about a mile up the road and walked into a shop which provides the identical service and had zero customers. After being asked for my phone number, which I was not willing to give, they told me I should be wearing a mask. I refused and went back to my original crowded shop and waited. I didn’t keep the shop from making money; they and Panhandle Health stopped their shop from making money.

We don’t believe what we are being told because we are being treated like Charlie Brown when Lucy holds the football and the goal posts keep being moved. Lord Fauci himself initially told all of us masks were unnecessary and the virus wasn’t all that serious, only to reverse himself. Here is a quote from Dr. Fauci on Feb. 17: “If you look at the masks that you buy in a drug store, the leakage around that doesn’t really do much to protect you,” he said. “People start saying, ‘Should I start wearing a mask?’ Now, in the United States, there is absolutely no reason whatsoever to wear a mask.”

Now we are told a piece of cloth makes it all good. Then we get a picture of him at a baseball game sitting with two others while not wearing his mask but if you want to riot, loot, burn down buildings and take over six square blocks of Seattle, it’s all good.

No one is saying this virus is not potentially dangerous but we are not all at equal risk. A friend’s wife had COVID-19 and stated, “I’ve had worse colds.” She, her husband and two children are fine. Give us ALL the information and we can decide for ourselves. Like I said, no elected official or appointed bureaucrat cares more about my health and safety than I do.

Oh, and by the way, the Constitution doesn’t grant anyone anything. It outlines and sets limits upon the federal government.

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Jim Cook is a Post Falls resident.