Opinion

It’s Time to Reopen America NOW.

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Posted: May 19, 2020 6:00 AM
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
It’s Time to Reopen America NOW.

Source: AP Photo/Chris O'Meara

I'm sure many of you didn't agree with my take on the lockdowns. In fact, it may be one of the few issues where I went against most in the conservative sphere. It happens. I don't kowtow. Period. Yet, unlike the liberal media establishment, I am totally unafraid to admit when I'm wrong. While the Russian collusion myth peddlers double-down and make themselves look more absurd, I'm not going to do that with my view on the COVID lockdown. 

Yes, again, I still do not regret my initial support of them, which was to curb the spread to prevent our health care system from being overrun. I did voice concerns about re-infection rates. But that was a month ago.

Since then, we've had a very good preliminary vaccine test result that injected the Dow Jones with steroids, an anti-viral therapeutic from Gilead Sciences also yielded excellent results, and most importantly, we've flattened the curve. Even in the COVID mecca of America, New York City, hospitalizations have stabilized, and deaths have dipped. In 31 states, measures to start reopening have begun. Phase one is in full effect. I'm okay with this. The data shows that Oklahoma isn't nearly as hard hit as the Big Apple or even Washington, D.C. They can and should start the process. Texas is beginning to reopen, and even Colorado. Denver's stay-at-home order expired earlier this month. Granted, there are still protocols regarding social distancing that are still in effect, like eating establishments only being allowed to operate at 50 percent capacity and movie theaters are still closed, but it's a start.

Here's where I'll admit I was wrong. To Florida's Gov. Ron DeSantis, I was wrong. I said his response was threatening his standing in the state, where his poll numbers across the board would point to an easy second-term; he was drawing a 46 percent approval…among Democrats. I still think the bit about reopening schools is way too soon; children don't get deathly ill from COVID, but they can still contract and spread it. But overall, the Sunshine State did not devolve into Italy. For normal people, this is a good thing. If there's anything to be wrong about regarding a COVID doomsday, this is the issue. It wasn't nearly as bad—and with Dr. Deborah Birx saying that they were casting a very liberal net on COVID deaths, I should expect to see the total death count be revised down.

In a month, new data and trends showed that it was time for most of the country to start phase one of reopening. For the liberal media, be prepared to experience a torrent of insane stories about red-state hotspots, new infections, and how these people are just greedy and awful…because they want to get back to work. First, there are no rural hotspots. That's the fakest of fake news. Second, Trump officials, like Dr. Anthony Fauci, said that new infections are going to happen, but the media will try to gaslight and say that the Trump White House declared there will be no new infections during phase one. Third, people need to work now. Sorry, it's been a month. The curve is flattened. It's time to end this virtual lockdown for most of the country. Most Americans cannot work from home. It's a privilege to do so, which is something the liberal media does not understand. Also, as you know already, they moved the goal post: no one can go outside until we have a vaccine. No, that's not what we agreed to.

We're just going to have to deal with this. Scores of businesses have already been lost. The unemployment rate is astronomical now due to the CVOID layoffs. Over 30 million Americans are out of work, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi wants to keep the economy trashed until after the election. Yeah, you see the goal, right? It's painfully transparent, which is why I don't think Democrats can maintain this "lockdown forever" position much longer. That position is telling generations-old small businesses that they have to start over. Barstool Sport's Dave Portnoy, El Prez, was blunt and straightforward on that position: screw it. He'd rather risk getting the virus than having to rebuild his media empire from scratch. Barstool literally began as a bunch of pamphlets that Portnoy personally distributed at street corners. Yeah, that's one way to push people in the Trump camp.

The lockdowns have allowed politicians to push the limits of government power—and it's no shock that all of them are Democrats or Republicans operating in heavily Democratic states, leaving them no option but to govern like one of them on this issue. Democrats in New Jersey, New York, and California were already trash on Second Amendment rights. You'd think they'd behave any differently with a pandemic? It's the risk you take with the government in times of emergency. The 9/11 terror attacks were a national emergency. Terror watch lists were necessary, right? They still are, but they're now being weaponized to curb Americans' Second Amendment rights years later, pushed by, guess who, the Democrats.

Hospitals are empty, even those in hotspot states like California. Field hospitals are not being used. Some counties in Washington State haven't had new COVID cases in two months.

In the meantime, we're going to have to deal with some more nonsense on this front. The Acela Corridor liberal bubbles cannot stand that red states are reopening at a faster pace than blue ones. Remember, these people are the smart ones. They live in the states that matter. And they're all teeming with COVID. Coronavirus infected blue states, with Democratic leaders and evidence of an incompetent response. Yes, looking at you, Andrew 'let's force nursing homes to take COVID patience' Cuomo and Bill 'go out and eat even after I saw evidence of an outbreak' de Blasio. This is New York's finest, huh? It's now a fact that our nationwide outbreak could be pinpointed to one place: New York City. This is an election year. Anything that makes Democrats look bad will be ignored for as long as possible. And believe me, Joe Biden, who probably needs reminders to wear pants every day, is going to need all the help he can get.

We overreacted in some states, but I can't shake the feeling of what if this was a more serious disease and we didn't move quickly enough a la de Blasio. It would be catastrophic, and if you thought the lockdowns were bad now, just wait until we get a more serious bug; the COVID lockdowns would seem like a cakewalk. We still don't know enough about this virus. We may never know for months, but the economy cannot hold that long. We accomplished the primary objective: flattening the curve. States that can reopen should. New York is going to have to wait. Alas, another process that liberals loathe: there is no one-size-fits-all solution here.

In Virginia, Northern Virginia is where a host of COVID cases are popping up. It's significant. There are over 31,000 cases but under 4,000 hospitalizations and a little over 1,000 deaths. Sixty percent of the Old Dominion's COVID death total comes from nursing homes. There is no need to extend the stay-at-home order for Northern Virginia, Gov. Blackface, I mean, Northam.

A month after my first column on this, we've come a long way. It's time to reopen. It's time to stop taking the license plates of churchgoers. It's time to stop arresting people or issuing fines for being outside, going to church, and going to the beach. The country and our small businesses cannot sustain this type of economic atrophy much longer. New COVID data shows stabilization and curve flattening. As we speak, new therapeutics and vaccines are being developed at warp speed. We'll have a new arsenal to attack the Wuhan coronavirus soon. In the meantime, it's time to get America moving again.

A lot can happen in three week's time. Hell, it already has--and for the better.