Children are dying for Republican ‘freedom’

GOP policies prioritize selfish adults over children’s lives


Apparently, the bodies of sick or dead children are not a motivator for today’s Republicans.

Then again, when were they?

When 20 children were gunned down at Sandy Hook elementary school in 2012, Republicans didn’t fight to end gun violence — they doubled down on unfettered gun access.

When scientists warned decades ago that generations of children would grow up with the perils of climate change, Republicans didn’t lead the charge for clean energy — they called the scientists liars and increased their support for oil and gas companies.

And now, as pediatric hospitals overflow with children hospitalized by the delta variant, Republican leaders aren’t coming to the rescue — they are the ones still refusing mask mandates and pandering to anti-vaxxers under the guise of freedom.

Whose freedom, exactly?

Setting aside the impacts of COVID-19 on adults, I could write all day about how the delta variant is looking worse for kids.

I could point out the increased transmissibility, noting that for every infected person the delta variant now infects an average of six or seven new people — not two or three like last year’s strain. Coupled with new evidence that suggests younger children might actually be more likely to spread the disease, it’s easier than ever for young people to get sick from this virus.

I could point out how the delta variant has led to a near sevenfold increase in pediatric cases over 30 days from July to August — a time when children haven’t been in school — and how children now make up about 15% of overall cases in the United States. With precautions getting thrown out the window, classrooms are already becoming hotbeds of viral transmission as schools reopen.

I could point out how vaccinations among American teenagers are the lowest of all eligible age groups, and nowhere near the amount needed to resume activities as normal. As of just a few weeks ago, only 25% of children ages 12 to 15 were fully vaccinated.

I could highlight how at least 1,902 children have been hospitalized for COVID as of Saturday, or share the deaths of five school children in Mississippi who recently contracted the virus. I could remind everyone that many of these children are not yet eligible for the vaccine, and they are wholly reliant on the adults around them to make safe decisions.

I’d point out that refusing to impose mask mandates and strong quarantine measures in schools is akin to inviting the “Outlook does not look good” response from a Magic 8 Ball.

I could then go on to make very reasonable, science-informed policy proposals for universal masks — they work — and vaccines — they work, too — to reduce transmissions. I’d provide graphs and cite experts to show how it’s easier to prevent outbreaks than control them, and why that’s better for the economy. Most of all, I’d point out that refusing to impose mask mandates and strong quarantine measures in schools is akin to inviting the “Outlook does not look good” response from a Magic 8 Ball.

And if I did all this, would it matter?

I don’t know. It feels like despite all the deaths in the past year and a half, too many American adults would still rather protect their perceived right to do whatever they please over protecting the right of a child to live.

Republican leaders — and all adults — prove me wrong.

Prove to me that mandating a thin piece of cloth over your nose and mouth isn’t too much effort to save the life of a child.

Prove to me that you’ll strongly support vaccinations, because you understand that the best path to a child’s long-term health is overcoming this pandemic as quickly as possible.

Prove to all of us that your mantra isn’t “Freedom for me, but not for thee.”

There was a time I thought protecting children and future generations was a shared value. Now, I’m not so sure — if you wouldn’t change your policies to save children before, why would you change your policies to save them now?

Children are dying for Republican ‘freedom’



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  1. I think, when you start a statement, exposing at first as example an event of “questionable veracity”, to put it softly about Sandy Hook affair, that does not look like a good way to gain believability points for the core topic that follows below in which one is trying defend your position about it.

    • Fetzer jumped off a bridge, and was willing to take others with him, but forgetting to ask permission to do so. There is a term for this. It’s called, ‘using people’. VT has long been open to alternate opinions. If you are sitting at a big table with military or intelligence analysts, it is not ususal to see differeneces of opinions on a situation, and what to do about it. Sometime there are knock down, drag out screaming sessions. We have always had readers looking for websites to supply their ideoligical ‘fix’ every morning, reinforcing beliefs they already have, or want, for the warm and fuzzy feeling that gives them. We never have ‘warm and fuzzy feelings’ on our do to list at the start of the day. We are not that naive. We know from the start that it is what it is, and the challenge is to analyze and try to figure out how best to deal with it. In publishing this often involves changes in publishing for all kinds of reasons, including people wanting to exploit the credibilty of VT solely for their own ends. We of course can spot this coming from a mile away as it is simply a part of the business. We have ‘infiltration writers’ coming at us all the time. People with no bios, no backgrounds, who actually don’t even think we have a right to know anything about them, something we find a bit odd. Virtually all that I ask to send me an educational and work background history never respond. Imagine that. The same comes with commenters, with the trolls mainly, but where we have maintained a steady balance. We did not create this situation, but we do deal with it, minus the whining.

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