A number of Americans are discrediting freedom by the irresponsible way they are acting in its name. I have in mind those attending in closely packed crowds "freedom rallies" in protest against social distancing, close-downs, and whatever else authorities are doing in the effort to lower the infection rate in order that steps can be taken toward reopening. I have in mind also those in dense crowds protesting closure of California beaches. If there are infected persons among these protesters, the consequence of the protesters will be to spread the virus and delay any reopening of economy and beaches.
Those who are insisting that it is their right to go about as they please without a mask or any precaution are demonstrating their complete lack of social responsibility. Their behavior affects other people, and they most certainly have no more right to infect others than they do to go around with a gun shooting people. No one has a Constitutional right to infect other people.
A number of people have been conned into believing that Covid-19 is little more than the flu and no more dangerous, that only old people are threatened, and a number of other unfounded beliefs. This is not the report from pediatric hospitals such as the National Children's Hospital in Washington, D.C., the Center for Heart Malformations in Paris, the Pediatric Intensive Care Society in the UK, and a number of others. Doctors in these hospitals are reporting that Covid-19 seems to be linked to a severe form of vascular disease in children that requires intensive care.
A successful reopening, one that does not have to be abandoned, requires intelligence and proper preparation. Testing and masks need to be available, ventilation systems need attending, and the infection rate needs to be low and falling, as it it likely to rise with reopening. The infection rate needs to be kept manageable as doctors, nurses, and hospitals are stressed by the first wave and do not need a second and third.
Many European health ministers and a number of US state governors apparently have no appreciation of how to go about a successful reopening. Marc Wathelet again spells it out for the Belgium government. Hopefully all governments will recognize their responsibility to know what they are doing.
The health situation requires a delay in the implementation of phase 1-a of the lock-down exit strategy by Marc Wathelet May 2, 2020:
Dear Madame Wilmès, dear members of the Belgian government and parliament,
The government document which describes the measures taken by the National Security Council of April 24, 2020 specifies that "the whole of the following dates are likely to change according to the health situation and the evolution of the virus."
The importance of this condition on the implementation of the different phases has been publicly underlined by Madame Wilmès and other government officials on several occasions.
The decision criteria for moving from one phase to the next are not publicly known, but the public health principles that should guide these decisions are well established.
Marc Van Ranst gives us an indication on these criteria by Twitter on April 26:
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