Editorial: Time for Governor Abbott, local officials to show leadership: admit mistakes re Chinese Coronavirus, move on

Kelli Ann Cox, Publisher, The Golden Hammer

Since mid-March, we’ve suffered terrible political leadership in the State of Texas and Texas localities. In hearing about the Chinese Coronavirus, our politicians responded by doing what they do worst: finding short-term solutions which they think will give them positive headlines in the liberal pro-government media regardless of the long-term consequences of those decisions.

That’s precisely how we’ve seen government respond to the virus. At the beginning, there was no data, no understanding of how the disease spread, and no understanding of the virus’ dangers or lack thereof.

Instead, there was panic.

CDC reports scared politicians into taking extreme actions. They blatantly violated fundamental tenets in our Constitution, such as the right of Freedom of Assembly and the Right to Worship Freely. They shut down businesses and destroyed people’s lives through economic devastation, suicides, or instilling fear into the population at-risk of heart disease, strokes, and other medical emergencies. They depended upon the federal government to print money, devalue the dollar, and risk massive inflation, all while destroying livelihoods millions of individuals had spent their entire lives building.

The CDC and public health prognostications of millions of deaths, hundreds of millions of cases, and widespread pain and suffering from COVID-19 never came to fruition, as one might expect from conclusions which had no statistical basis or even any analytical one.

When county judges, mayors, and the Governor shut down businesses, closed churches, and took a strong economy and wrenched it into a depression, they violated the Separation of Powers Doctrine by acting without legislative authority, they violated numerous provisions in the Constitution, and they disregarded the difference between panic and sober decision making.

Now, six months past the inception of the politicians’ panic, we must change course. Governor Greg Abbott’s declaration yesterday of more “COVID-19 disaster” is irresponsible and threatens our Texas way of life. Instead, he should have declared that the fear must end, the disaster is far beyond over, and that Texans should move on to restore their lives.

As the Reverend Jesse Jackson said, “Leaders must be tough enough to fight, tender enough to cry, human enough to make mistakes, humble enough to admit them, strong enough to absorb the pain, and resilient enough to bounce back and keep on moving.”

Our politicians have failed to show toughness, tenderness, humanity, humbleness, strength, or resilience. It’s time for Governor Abbott and local leaders such as Sylvester Turner (Houston Mayor), Mark Keough (Montgomery County Judge), or Lina Hidalgo (Harris County Judge) to admit that they erred in over-reacting to the virus. It’s time for them to say they’re sorry and that they want to move forward to rebuild the Texas they so greatly harmed.

Really. It’s time.

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