It is time to acknowledge that the Democrat Leftists and their accomplices in the media are busy engendering hysteria in the American people over the COVID-19 outbreak. They take certain COVID-19 numbers reported by governments and push them into the public without giving that data the context necessary to understand what is really going on.
The media and the left imply that Arizona has about 79,000 active cases of COVID-19, but that number is the total number of cases we have had in Arizona since we’ve started to track these cases.
The focus has been on the number of daily positive test results. We have had an undeniable uptick in the number of people who are testing positive for the virus. But, without context, the Left and purveyors of panic in the media engender the hysteria they are striving for.
Here is some context: The hospitalization rate of those contracting the virus has fallen by almost half over the last three weeks. That’s a good thing. The mortality rate has also declined by about half since June 1.
More than half of Arizonans who have been detected with the Chinese Virus are between the age of 20-44, but only about 7% of those who have died are in this age group. Why is this important? Because the demographic targeted by the Governor’s latest order to close bars, movie theaters, gyms, and water parks cover one of the least vulnerable groups of Arizonans. In that sense, the action seems to have little relation to the area of concern.
On the other hand, those over the age of 65 are clearly the most susceptible to dying at the hands of the virus. Just under 75% of all fatalities attributed to the virus are in this age group. That is a sobering number considering that the elderly make up only a little more than 12% of those who have tested positive for COVID-19.
Then we have to consider the places in Arizona where there has been a marked advance in the number of positive tests. Unfortunately, the home of the nation’s largest Indian Nation, the Navajos in Apache and Navajo Counties, continues to be hardest hit. That’s a tragedy and the State and Feds are trying to assist. Hospitals around the state continue to help with those who are most seriously affected.
Yuma and Santa Cruz counties are also bearing the brunt of the increased cases. Why? Could those counties be experiencing the same thing reported recently by CNN? That is, cross-border traffic from Mexico is bringing the infection across our southern border. The San Luis and Nogales Ports of Entry are two of the busiest on the southern border. Yuma County has a per capita infection rate more than 2.5 times greater than the State’s largest county, Maricopa. Santa Cruz County is more than three times as much as the Phoenix metro area.
Children need to be in school. The American Academy of Pediatricians (AAP) recently said, “… the AAP strongly advocates that all policy considerations for the coming school year should start with a goal of having students physically present in school…. and there is already evidence of the negative impacts on children because of school closures in the spring of 2020.” But Arizona’s governor postponed the start of the fall school semester, producing anxiety about whether children will return to school, and if so, when.
The two demographics measured by the Arizona Department of Health Services that are least susceptible—by a large margin—to serious effects from the virus are those aged 0-20, and 21-44. The most vulnerable are those over age 65.
This then begs the question of why Arizona Governor Ducey shut down the sturdiest demographics. After all, schools, bars, restaurants, gyms, water parks, and tubing on the river are far more likely to be utilized and attended by those who are far less likely to experience the most drastic consequences of the virus. It makes reason stare.
While we should aggressively protect the most vulnerable, policymakers should not bend to the hysteria manufactured by Leftists and the media. There is a plethora of data that's available and when taken in context undercuts the broad sweep of the Governor’s recent edict. The Governor should rescind his recent order and get Arizonans back to work, school, and play.