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We Can Safely Re-Open Our Schools

In any crisis, we generally get to see the best and the worst of human behavior.  Some people are able to overcome the challenges by devising effective strategies and taking appropriate action.  Others either surrender to failure or use the crisis for nefarious purposes and personal gain.  On the local level, the majority of folks will recognize the need to find a reasonable solution and move forward, as long as the outcome is generally favorable.

In our severely divided nation, however, every crisis becomes a tool to advance a political agenda. 

The Covid-19 epidemic is a medical crisis that should be solved by physicians based on sound medical principles.  Instead, it became a political epidemic that threatens the physical and economic health of our fellow citizens and the survival of our nation. 

As a “novel” virus, the medical effects of Covid-19 on patients were not initially known.  Ideally, public health physicians and virologists with experience treating pandemics should have been consulted to acquire medical facts as quickly as possible.  This knowledge could then have been used by government officials to create an effective strategy to limit disease spread and protect those most vulnerable with limited collateral damage.  

Unfortunately, the physicians and bureaucrats in agencies like the World Health Organization, the CDC, the NIH, and various universities, were too busy with their own political agendas to prepare to combat the pandemics they were formed and funded to prevent.  When you add a biased and unreliable media that routinely ignores or distorts the facts to serve its own collectivist agenda, the inevitable result is public hysteria based on political lies instead of the medical facts. 

We must now take stock of the destruction of our economy and national psyche, answer serious ethical questions, and determine efficient ways to safely reestablish our normal American society based on the Natural Law Rights guaranteed by our founding documents. 

At this time, the most pressing issue must be a plan to re-open our schools for in-person education so that our children can return to a normal school environment in an effective and safe manner. Children learn best in the classroom setting for many reasons, mostly because teachers are trained to create an atmosphere in which learning can occur.  Children at home are often surrounded by multiple distractions and, left unattended, find excuses not to engage in schoolwork. Few parents have the training or will to reproduce a setting that is conducive for learning.  School also provides the benefit of social contact with peers which is an essential for a child’s psychological maturation. 

A report made to the EU ministers in Paris said that European nations that have reopened schools have not seen an increase in viral infections in students, teachers, parents, or staff.  Several recent studies in the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics reported that the spread of Covid-19 infection from child to child and from child to adults is rare and that seasonal flu kills more children than Covid-19.   In addition, the burden of closed schools and home-bound children falls most heavily on minorities and the disabled who are less likely to have the ability to homeschool their children. 

It should be clear that being in school is essential to develop mental, physical, and social skills, especially for young children, some of whom may never recover even from these relatively few months that schools have been shut down.  We now know enough about the Covid-19 virus to put safeguards in place to reduce the risk of infection for students and teachers.  Parents able to homeschool their children properly should be allowed that choice.  For most students and families, however, schools can and should be reopened to prevent any additional harm to the educational goals we all share for our children.    

The above should be enough for everyone to put aside their partisan agendas and do what is right for our children.  It is time to end the hypocrisy of politicians who accept and allow gatherings for protests and riots while prohibiting similar group activities deemed favorable to their political opponents. 

Unfortunately, when a disease or any crisis becomes political, public policy is determined by the electoral and financial needs of politicians instead of medical and scientific facts.  Politicians, bureaucrats, and government officials who refuse to act in the best interests of our entire nation are themselves the problem, and they must be removed from their positions of power. 

Jane Lindell Hughes, MDDr. Dan’s guest on Freedom Forum Radio this weekend is Jane Hughes, MD.  Dr. Hughes has been in private practice for 20 years and holds an appointment as Clinical Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Texas Health Science Center.  She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS).

Episode one of this two-part interview begins this weekend, Saturday and Sunday, August 8-9, on WJRB 95.1 FM and streamed live over the Internet.

Episode 2:  August 15-16

All programs are available by podcast following airtime here.

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