No More Half-Stepping Governor Ducey!
Arizona is spiraling out of control and we need decisive leadership, not prescriptive guidance, to stop this indiscriminate killer virus. Every single person on the planet is affected by this pandemic yet our Governor and state leaders’ only plan is to take a half-step to nowhere. The single most important mitigant to stop COVID-19 based on abundant facts, direct counsel, science, and evidence is to mandate wearing masks in public. The Governor must take decisive action today to issue a mandate for everyone when in public to wear a mask. And yes, it is time to shut down the state again and issue a stay at home order.
Arizona has the worst infection rate per capita in the world. That is a staggering fact and should trigger a maximum and overwhelming response to what the Governor calls a maximum challenge. If, in fact, we have the highest regard for our health care and front line workers why not help them by stemming the flow of people overwhelming our health care system? You can’t have it both ways.
A 50 percent restriction for dining in restaurants is weak and non-response to a massive problem. This is no more than a half step that gets us no further ahead than we were a month ago. We need decisive action that certainly will cause some inconvenience to some, loss of income and revenue for others, but will save lives. Make the wearing of masks mandatory and require businesses to demand customers wear them on their premises. To ensure that individuals and companies comply with a mandatory mask order while in public, random inspections should commence on everyone. Those not complying should face maximum fines and penalties to act as a deterrent for non-compliance. This is not about individual freedoms this is about saving lives.
Opening schools for in-person instruction is simply unacceptable and reckless. I work with 260 elementary schools and 30 school districts in my executive role at the nonprofit Back to School Clothing Drive. We care deeply about our kids and are deeply concerned they will be forced into harm’s way to satisfy a political agenda. To ensure the safety of our kids and educators schools should only conduct classes virtually and remain closed for in-person instruction through the fall if not the remainder of the year until we have a handle on the virus.
While I understand people’s desire to protect their personal freedoms, we all need to deploy more common sense and personal responsibility for helping stop the spread of this disease. I understand the need to balance public health and sustain people’s livelihoods and abilities to earn a living. That being said, we can recover from temporary closures, but no one recovers from death. Our first priority must be the safety and security of our families and loved ones. We are all at risk. Arizona needs leadership now more than ever. It is not the time to play politics, align with an ideology, or score political points or favor. Too many lives have been lost with no end in sight.