Ken Paige: Hope for the new year — a healthy community resolution
The Nevada County Restaurant Coalition believes there is hope ahead if we will open our hearts and minds and carefully consider a fresh approach to the COVID-19 issues as we enter 2021 — a path of a much-needed restoration for our community.
We have the opportunity as a community to build a winning strategy that can open up Nevada County, as we have opened our restaurants. We need each other and together we can do this:
In 2021, let’s engage our whole community to find solutions. Together we can find cross-cutting reforms and new ways to think that will unite us and move us forward. We need to see the whole picture — including the medical, mental health, economic, fiscal and societal impacts of COVID-19 and shutdowns. Together we are more powerful than any single broad-based government mandate.
In 2021, let’s seek out evidence-based treatment options that reduce hospital/ICU utilization. The ever-changing public health orders are not well-backed by scientific data, and neither the governor nor the California Department of Public Health have presented this data to either the state Legislature or to the people of California.
In 2021, let’s get the complete data and full science so that our community can make better informed decisions about their families vs. politicians and the media influence.
In 2021, let’s abandon the lockdown approach and embrace a more targeted COVID-19 strategy focused on balancing risks and benefits — protecting the most vulnerable at-risk members of society while allowing others to live their lives normally and build up immunity to the virus through natural infection. Lockdowns have failed to contain this virus.
In 2021, let’s rally together and respond locally to the COVID-19 virus in accordance with our local data and circumstances. We are geographically diverse and ill-suited for the governor’s countywide restrictions imposed by the blueprint. Let’s demand the state enable our COVID-19 response to be tailored to our geographically separate areas, such as different ZIP codes, as circumstances and case levels warrant.
As 2020 ends, let’s put to rest a nine-month government strategy that is destined for failure. It’s clear to us now that their strategy has only resulted in fear, schools forcibly closed, workers and businesses arbitrarily divided by intimidation into essential and nonessential, police powers to enforce human separation under the name of social distancing, stay-home orders, travel restrictions to separate us further and hospitals shut for anything but COVID-related illnesses.
Let’s say goodbye to a strategy that has created rampant unemployment, isolation and an uncertain future that could lead to 75,000 deaths from drug or alcohol abuse, suicide and other mental health issues. The mandates imposed on us by the state have resulted in a wave of “deaths of despair” that will only continue to grow if these disastrous lockdowns are not stopped.
Let’s stand strong against any further implementation or enforcement of state or public health orders; We the community are able to take personal responsibility for our decisions
Let’s hold our state and local officials accountable for their actions when they claim that imminent overwhelming danger exists, but then regularly turn around and flaunt their own restrictions by eating indoors at restaurants, gathering together with members of multiple households, or permitting their own children to attend in-person instruction at private school.
Let’s hold our legislatures accountable to uphold the Bill of Rights, freedom of commerce, family rights, religious freedom, and basic freedom of association and assembly.
Let’s start 2021 together by asking the Nevada County Board of Supervisors to sign the “Healthy Communities Resolution” sponsored by Assemblyman Kevin Kiley. It is already on their desk. This resolution embodies all we have stated with best practices based upon experiences within our community. We believe this approach will kick start 2021 by gathering our community leaders, businesses owners, officials and community members to find alternative ways of approaching the COVID-19 situation, while still preserving people’s livelihood and protecting our most fundamental liberties.
Happy New Year to everyone and let’s all make the “Healthy Communities Resolution” together. For more information, visit https://ncrcoalition.com.
Ken R. Paige, writing for the Nevada County Restaurant Coalition, is the proprietor along with Chad Paige of Friar Tuck’s Restaurant & Bar in Nevada City.
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