Wednesday September 30, 2020
The recent murder of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police, and the riots and protests that have followed, have forged an essential discussion on police brutality that has been long in the making. In the past, many of us have responded to publicized incidents of police brutality by giving officers the benefit of the doubt because we believe that the other side of the story will justify their actions. We must now reckon that the “other side of the story” does not always absolve police officers’ of wrongdoing. For the first time, many of us now stare directly into the eyes of police brutality’s harsh existence, the same existence that Black people have known to be true their entire lives.However, Grebe disagrees (as do most Americans) with the “defund the police” movement.
The reignition of the Black Lives Matter movement was undoubtedly justifiable, expected, and necessary in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder. As the movement gains steam, it forces us to have difficult conversations and continue to stare into the eyes of police brutality’s existence.
Governor Ron DeSantis has proven it: it is actually possible for a politician to wise up and do the right thing. In a sweeping order announced September 25, the governor has opened up the entire economy. He has even limited the ability of local governments to impose more restrictions and collect fines for mask violations.
Inevitably, the announcement was decried by the lockdowners, even though, as the governor pointed out:
- Covid+ hospitalizations have declined by 77% since the July peak.
- Covid+ ICU hospitalizations have declined 72% since the July peak.
- ED visits for Covid-like illness have declined by nearly 80% since the July peak.
- Daily hospital admissions for Covid have declined by 81% since the July peak.
- The percentage of positive diagnostic test results for new cases was reported at 4.32%.
- 24% of hospital beds are empty; so are 23% of ICU beds.
Most impressively, the governor did this despite a trend in deaths that does not look particularly great. For this he is being blasted but it misses the point entirely. His actions were particularly brave, bold, and wise precisely because he didn’t wait for some magic turning point in the data to permit Floridians to exercise the rights and freedoms.