‘Happy New Year’ sounded reasonable when we were greeting one another last January. But oh, how things can turn on a dime.
We Americans didn’t know it, but as we were toasting the New Year, the top dogs in China were up to their necks in shit and trying to figure a way out that allowed them to save face at the same time. Their plan almost worked.
By mid-month, they knew that as a result of their actions, the world was facing a Pandemic of unknown proportions.
Within scant moments, the CDC implemented public health screening on flights arriving at SFO, JFK and LAX. ATL and ORD would make it a five-some shortly thereafter. On January 21st, the CDC confirmed the first case of the new Wuhan Virus in the U.S.
It was the same virus that had killed six people in China. OMG.
On January 23rd, the World Health Organization (WHO) declined to categorize it as a global health emergency because (they said) there were no known human-to-human transmissions of the disease outside China.
On January 24th, America’s medical wizard Anthony Fauci (renowned medical expert in the U.S.) said, “We don’t want the American public to be worried about this because their risk is low.”
OK, we all thought. No problem; let’s sit back and have a few cocktails.
SHARP TURN AHEAD
On January 30th, the WHO declared the Wuhan Virus (as it had come to be known) to be a, “Public health emergency of International concern.” The head of WHO praised China for its, “… quick response to the crisis.”
OK, relax. Crisis averted.
Not so fast there, big fella. Later than same day, the health wizards in Chicago reported the first human-to-human transmission of that darned virus in the U.S. But, they said, “… the risk to the American people remains low.”
The very next day … SURPRISE!
Trump declared the Wuhan Virus outbreak to be a public health emergency in the U.S. and quarantined people who had recently been to certain parts of China.
If that weren’t enough, TRUMP STOPPED ALL ENTRY OF FOREIGN NATIONALS WHO HAD BEEN TO CHINA IN THE PREVIOUS 14 DAYS. That ban took effect February 2nd.
Can you believe it! And they said it was a low risk to all of us. The U.S.A. is very well prepared according to the Prez. Hmmmm.
On February 7th, the Chinese doctor who was reprimanded by security police for warning fellow doctors about the virus died of the very same virus.
February 26th, the CDC reported the first ‘Community Spread’ of the Wuhan Virus in California. President Trump appointed a task force to tackle the illness and put Vice President Pence in charge.
About that time, all of us are introduced to two of our nation’s experts: Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx. They seem to know everything about viruses and the epidemics they can cause.
Two days later, we learn that the test kits which the CDC had sent to laboratories across the country are, ‘flawed.’ Cop translation: ‘The tests don’t work and aren’t worth a shit.’
More from the experts: On February 29th, the U.S. Surgeon General echoed the CDC guidance discouraging Americans from buying face masks. “They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching the #Coronavirus. If consumers buy them all, healthcare providers won’t be able to get them in order to care for sick patients. That would put them and our communities at risk.”
Huh? Say that again and listen to how ridiculous it sounds.
On March 11th, President Trump announced a travel ban on Europe. The WHO finally got around to declaring the Wuhan Virus a pandemic.
I guess they were the last ones to figure it out.
Expert Dr. Fauci said the ‘testing logjam’ constitutes a “failing” of the nation’s healthcare system.
Like the WHO and the pandemic announcement, it seems that the experts were the last ones to know what was happening on the ground. Fauci must have been asleep when it became obvious to the rest of us that there weren’t enough tests because someone screwed-up.
Here’s the Big One:
On March 16th, the President said he needed fifteen days from the American people during which we would agree to avoid social gatherings of more than 10 people, limit discretionary travel and discretionary surgeries. We agreed to hang out at home and take a few days off from work – except for those of us (in blue) who have essential jobs – like us cops.
The rationale seemed to make sense: we needed to slow the spread of the virus so that our hospital system did not get overloaded with patients who couldn’t be treated. Most of us nodded in agreement. “We can do that,” seemed to be the common sense response among the American public.
GIVE ‘EM AN INCH …
That’s when things started going sideways.
March 24th, the Tokyo Olympics scheduled for the summer are postponed … a whole year!
March 26th, it is announced that America has the most cases of the Wuhan Virus. Truth be told, 1,296 Americans had died, at that point.
March 28th, the CDC issues a travel advisory for the New York area!
March 29th, the White House hits us between the eyes. The fifteen-day shutdown announced on March 16th was being extended an additional thirty days through April 30th.
Holy shit, Batman!
On April 3rd, we are told that the Morning Sun will be rising in the West from now on, marking an About-Face from the past.
No, not really. Just kidding.
Do you remember 34 days earlier (2/29) we were told not to bother with masks? Well, on this day the experts did an about-face now telling us to wear face masks in public to, “… stop the spread of the coronavirus …”
By April 15th, many Americans had their bellies full of staying at home and they began protesting.
On April 16th, the White House issued guidance on reopening.
It’s about time.
TAKE A LOOK OVER YOUR SHOULDER
Back on March 16th, we were asked if we could hunker-down for a couple of weeks. That didn’t sound so tough.
Hell, it was the end of winter in most parts of the country, i.e. cold outside and in the middle of the Lenten season for us Christians. Staying home didn’t sound like much of a sacrifice. And, there was a good cause: don’t overrun the nation’s hospital system.
Most of us listened closely to Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx who are our acknowledged experts on issues such as this. But, shutting down all of the country’s businesses for a brief period sounded pretty radical.
Hanging in the balance, the experts told us, are the deaths of 2.2 Million Americans. That’s what the models predicted. Models from English wizards who are experts in their field of medical modeling announced that 2.2 Million of our fellow Americans would croak if we didn’t do this.
What could go wrong?
The requested two-week hiatus, which was being directed by the experts, got out of control. Suddenly, it became the story of the century.
- What started as a 15 day furlough became 30 days, 45 days, 75 days and even longer, for others. Some folks still don’t know when they will get their lives back.
- The start of Baseball Season didn’t happen – and it might not.
- Football season is uncertain.
- The NBA has been hung out to dry.
- Hockey is still on ice.
- Graduates of middle school, high school and college will not experience the accolades of a commencement exercise.
- Weddings have been put on hold, indefinitely.
- Our annual Police Week celebration in Washington D.C. didn’t happen.
- Thousands of other planned events won’t happen, either.
It all sounded so simple, at the outset. Now, it seems as though it’s off the rails.
- We have governors who have become drunk on their own power. In the future, we will be saying, “Remember Michigan!” to prevent a repeat of this catastrophe.
- Americans have been ordered to stay in their homes and may only emerge in order to restock their supplies.
- Many small businesses have closed their doors – forever.
- The school year has been prematurely ended.
- People are running out of the money needed to pay the rent, the phone bill and to buy food for their families.
- Suicides are up.
- Folks are even barred from going to church, synagogue or other.
- Women are being jailed for fixing the hair of others.
We cops are dealing with citizens who are frustrated, angry, short-tempered and very tired of being told what to do – like a five-year old. Too often, we are bearing the brunt of physical outbursts from those whom we are supposed to protect.
WHERE DID WE GO WRONG?
My Grandmother had a phrase that she would use to label ‘experts’ like Doctors Fauci and Birx: EDUCATED ASSHOLES.
In layman’s terms, these are people who are geniuses in their respective fields of study. They have the respect of their peers and even their teachers for the brain-power they can muster to solve problems in their chosen field.
HOWEVER, if you take them outside their specialty field, they are complete idiots. Grandma would say sarcastically that, “They aren’t smart enough to come in out of the rain.”
We allowed these ‘experts’ to convince us to shut down our economy and the rest of the country, with it.
“Blindly following a person like this will almost always take you over a cliff,” she would say, “they have no sense of balance or moderation.”
And, that’s where we are today.
Comparing it to our job, it would be like Running Code while wearing blinders and a having patch over one eye. We all know what the result of that would be.
Look at this one minute video from Kevin James and then, I will finish this up.
The expert Fauci-Birx team relied on a British model that projected the death rate in the United States. It was created by a third expert, Professor Neil Ferguson from the Imperial College of London. His model showed that if the U.S. did nothing we could expect 2.2 Million deaths in our country.
That is what President Trump was looking at when he decided that closing down the economy and everything else was the only reasonable thing to do.
Here’s a short trip down memory lane with experts:
#1 – Remember being told that we all had to drop the speed we drive on the freeway from 70 MPH to 55 MPH or we would run out of oil?
#2 – Remember the Feds giving us a brand new “Nutrition Pyramid” which advised that we should avoid eating fats of any kind and replace them with carbohydrates?
That change alone is the primary cause of the increase of obesity in children and morbid obesity among adults.
#3 – Remember how the experts preached that the continued use of paper grocery bags would end civilization, as we know it? We must all switch to plastic grocery bags, IMMEDIATELY.
In recent years, California (and other states) have outlawed plastic grocery bags and replaced them with cloth bags which have now been replaced with … PAPER grocery bags.
AS FOR FERGUSON’S MODEL on projected deaths from the coronavirus: OTHER Experts have derided the coding used in Ferguson’s model, warning saying it is a, “buggy mess that looks more like a bowl of angel hair pasta than a finely tuned piece of programming.”
As of this writing on May 20th, there have been 1,559,750 cases of the coronavirus in the United States and 92,333 deaths from it, as well.
Turns out that reality is 1/23rd of what the original model predicted.
Before you start following some ‘expert’ make certain that you have examined the related context that will be impacted by the change they insist upon.
READ MORE: CHICAGO’S NEW BULLSHIT GANG DATA BASE
Remember one of the fundamental teachings from the academy: your actions will be most often judged using the “Reasonable Man” theory. Hence, is the expert’s recommended plan of action reasonable?
I have heard many of the people whom I respect estimate that we will have approximately 125,000 deaths by August. Remember, it’s an estimate. Here are some actual annual death rates from other causes:
- 121,404 Alzheimer’s
- 160,301 Chronic lower respiratory disease
- 169,936 All accidents
- 250,000 Medical errors
- 599,108 Cancer
- 647,457 Heart Disease
Shutting down an economy that was humming along at record rates now seems absurd. It was. If we lose 125,000 people, it will be:
- 0.0378% of our population
- 1 person out of every 2,640 people will die
Remember, back on March 16th, the President asked to shut things down, just for 15 days so we wouldn’t overwhelm the hospital system? Now, we have some governors who want everything to remain shut down until a cure is found for the coronavirus. Which may never happen – think of AIDS.
Another absurdity, indeed.
WHAT YOU SHOULD DO RIGHT NOW
As cops, we took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution from all attacks, whether foreign or domestic.
There are some who would argue that the Constitution is under attack TODAY by governors who are exceeding their authority. I will leave that argument for someone who is a pay grade above me to decide.
For us guys who are on the street, who are dealing with John Q Public, I believe that it critical that we are REASONABLE in every aspect of our contact.
We must always be mindful that, in this country, we work for the citizens, as a whole. They are the boss. (This doesn’t include the asshole who reminds you on a traffic stop that he pays your salary.)
It is far more important that we be reasonable than it is for us to be right.
As my father often said, you must look at yourself in the mirror every day when you shave. Make sure that you like the person you see.
“Above all, it’s about going home at the end of the shift … “
We couldn’t agree more.
Jim enjoys hearing from his readers – EMAIL
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