LaBoyteaux 2020–Memorial Day Weekend

How many have given their lives to protect and maintain our country and democracy?  We remember and honor them all today.  “That this nation, under God, may have a new birth of freedom and the government of the people, by the people and for the people will not perish from this earth”  Abraham Lincoln.

This weekend President Trump appeared to order the reopening of churches contrary to Covid-19 restrictions in many states.  It is questionable that he can do so because he had previously ceded these authorities to the states, but that does not prevent political posturing.  A Federal Court in California ruled against a group of churches seeking to resume in person services, finding that the Covid-19 restrictions addressed all large gatherings and did not specifically discriminate against religion.

First I want to give a big shout out and thank you to those ministers and religious leaders who have found ways to conduct services which maintain social distancing.  Whether “on line” services or something as creative as renting the drive-in movies and placing church goers in every other parking place.  We are nearing 100,000 deaths from Covid-19 but for many Americans it seems distant.  If we were talking about something as lethal as the Ebola virus, we probably would not even be having this discussion.

My message to all Americans this weekend is do not let down your guard about Covid-19.  The virus is still out there.  It is still killing people.  It can be transmitted as easily as having a normal conversation with an infected person, even an infected person who is not showing symptoms.  Cases have jumped up again in some locations.  And I ask all Americans, if you are in an establishment that requires masks, take care of yourself and be considerate of others, wear a mask.

Speaking at the Ford plant in Michigan, President Trump declared that he would not shut down the country again even if there is a second wave of Covid-19.  More political posturing.  Again, he ceded that authority to the states, which is probably good since the individual states are very different and not equally impacted by Covid-19.  However his words are about leadership and minimizing the seriousness of this virus, as I mentioned previously, contains a calculus of death.  I urge all Americans to maintain your guard and shelter in place as needed, even as I work to safely reopen business and industry.

In another absurdity, President Trump this week claimed that states sending out absentee ballot applications were breaking the law and inviting massive voter fraud.  Voter fraud is very uncommon and the President, like the Russian bots, is pushing fear and lack of confidence in our election system.  The Republican Party is suing California to prevent voting by mail, Mitch McConnell is blocking vote by mail legislation, some locations are making it more difficult for people to vote in person (less polling places) and the continuing issue of redistricting.  Voter suppression is real and a political strategy.






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