The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020


Democrats are avid members of Team Apocalypse and as such, have resisted any action that would bring the country out of the dark place that the COVID-19 shutdown has created. In cities and states where they are in control, the Dems have purposely slow-walked reopening—keeping businesses shuttered for as long as possible and advocating shutdowns of places like beaches and parks in what can only be characterized as a laughably meaningless gesture to "stop the spread." Now, the Dems (and their allies in the teachers' unions) have decided to plant the Team Apocalypse flag on school re-openings.

The Democrats tell us that they are driven by "science" and that their primary objective is to "keep children safe." The editors of the Wall Street Journal provide the Dems with some "science:"
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 30 children under age 15 have died from Covid-19. In a typical year 190 children die of the flu, 436 from suicide, 625 from homicide, and 4,114 from unintentional deaths such as drowning.

Only two children under age 18 have died in Chicago—fewer than were killed in shootings in a recent weekend. In New York City, 0.03% of children under age 18 have been hospitalized for Covid and 7.5 in one million have died. The death rate for those over 75 is more than 2,200-times higher than for those under 18.

Children so far have been shielded from the virus compared to working adults. But even pediatric cancer patients at New York’s Memorial Sloan Kettering were about a third less likely to test positive than their adult care-givers, and only one of 20 who tested positive required noncritical hospital care. In Sweden, which kept schools open, only 20 children under age 19—0.6% of confirmed cases—have been admitted to the ICU and only one has died.
So ... it's 40 times more likely that a child will be murdered in their home or neighborhood than die of COVID-19, but the Dems want to keep schools closed. You could make the argument that kids are statistically safer in school (even with COVID-19) than they are at home, but whatever.

Sure, the Dems make noises about opening schools, as long as plastic bubbles are placed around each seat, school cafeterias are closed, level-4 biohazard cleaning occurs every hour (exaggerating slightly, but not by much), kids are tested daily, recess is cancelled, and on and on. Gosh, you'd think this is just another way to slow walk any re-opening. That's because it is.

Secondarily, the Dems use the tenuous argument that children (who, by the way, generally exhibit no symptoms whatsoever, even if they do have the virus) might infect older, more vulnerable populations. Why then, aren't schools closed every year when common flu rages? After all, even one death is too many, right? Vulnerable populations die every single year from the flu. Wouldn't it be more sensible to provide mechanisms that separate the vulnerable from kids, thereby eliminating or at least attenuating the problem? And please, spare me the notion that some multi-generational families cannot separate. Do we close all schools because "some families" might have trouble separating children from grandparents? Special accommodations can be made for those edge cases.

But, but, but ... what about "cases," cry the Democrats, "they're "skyrocketing" to almost 60,000 a day!!!" 

In 2009-2010, the CDC estimates that there were 60 million cases of H1N1 (swine flu) virus (that killed tens of thousands of Americans) for an average of about 165,000 cases every day. Schools remained open, even though the H1N1 virus attacked a far younger demographic than COVID-19.

The editors of WSJ continue:
Keeping schools closed while awaiting a vaccine isn’t an acceptable alternative. You don’t need a degree in child psychology to know kids have struggled with virtual education. A Reuters analysis last month found that fewer than half of 57 public school districts were taking attendance. About a third weren’t providing required services to special-needs students.

Teachers unions have fought to reduce accountability. United Teachers Los Angeles’s pandemic collective-bargaining agreement prohibited schools from requiring face-to-face online instruction such as Zoom or Skype. Teachers also don’t have to work more than four hours per day.
But the Dems and their public sector union allies persist because they think keeping the country and its citizens in a dark place will somehow give them an electoral advantage.  Although they don't realize it, the Dems are on the wrong side of this issue, and it will come back to haunt them.  

Even if classrooms are only 1/3 full at the start, kids deserve to go to school—not a virtual school, but a physical place where they can see their friends, interact with their teachers, and learn. I predict that within a month of re-opening, classrooms will be half-full, and by the late fall, they'll be at 90 percent occupied. The dark place, for kids at least, will begin to recede from memory.

Keeping schools closed is just another hysterical, illogical reaction that Team Apocalypse just loves to encourage.

Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) is a unique character—a man who dispenses cornpone wisdom with a clarity and directness that is often startling for a politician. Ian Schwartz reports on his comments on the back-to-school issue:
"America is going through a rough patch right now," Kennedy said. "Some people seem to be enjoying it. Maybe they just hate America. Maybe they just enjoy watching the world burn. I think some are liking the chaos because they think it gives them a political advantage. Part of that chaos is being caused by our schools closing. For our kids, we need to open them."

"I can promise you for many of our kids, keeping these schools closed is going to hurt them far worse than the coronavirus can ...

"I know some people in good faith disagree with me and I respect that. Let's have the debate. But there are some people who want to keep our schools closed because they think it gives them a political advantage. And they are using our kids as political pawns and to them, I say unashamedly they can kiss my ass ..." 
Even with COVID-19 hysteria (and there's plenty of that thanks to Team Apocalypse);  even with the four constituencies aligned to defeat Trump, and even with Trump's penchant for taking a clear win and stepping on it until it's a perceived as a loss, most people can see through the Dem's claim that keeping schools closed is "all about the children" ...  it isn't, because of the damage that it does to kids. 

Tens of millions of beleaguered parents (many of whom remain unemployed and financially stressed because of unnecessary and ineffective policies initiated by Team Apocalypse), will come to  understand the Dems' true purpose. As they walk into the voting booth in November, they'll  think back on everything that has transpired since February and say, "... they can kiss my ass."

Push back is coming.

UPDATE (07-17-2020):

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine has issued an important report that—of course—Team Apocalypse has completely ignored:
Given the importance of in-person interaction for learning and development, districts should prioritize reopening with an emphasis on providing full-time, in-person instruction in grades K-5 and for students with special needs who would be best served by in-person instruction...

Evidence to date suggests that children and youth (aged 18 and younger) are at low risk of serious, long-term consequences or death as a result of contracting COVID-19.
The National Academies report also notes that children don’t just rely on schools for education ...

In some communities, schools have increasingly become a key point of coordination for health and mental health services for vulnerable students and families... School nurses conduct screenings, administer medications, address acute injuries and illnesses, and help students get needed care. They also help prevent disease outbreaks by tracking student immunization requirements and monitoring health trends...

Keeping schools closed to in-person learning in Fall 2020 poses potential educational risks for all students. Children and youth benefit from learning experiences that include support from a teacher and interactions with peers. Even when it includes virtual interactions, distance learning cannot take the place of in-person interaction... The risks of not having face-to-face learning are especially high for young children, who may suffer long-term consequences academically if they fall behind in the early grades.
Gosh, you'd think comments like this would be given more weight by the trained hamsters in the mainstream media. Nope. Instead, they're pushing the narrative proposed by the  Democrats' allies in the teachers' unions, a narrative that demands that schools stay closed until ... well ... until it's "safe." Problem is, for kids and most teachers under 60, it's safe RIGHT NOW!