It’s a matter of trust

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If there’s one thing I learned during 2020, it’s that I can’t trust the Federal government. Just to be clear, the opinions in this column are mine and mine alone.

Not that I had much trust before. I’m usually laid back and willing to give people the benefit of the doubt. But now, I’m done.

There is no doubt in my mind that the COVID-19/Corona virus is real. But I believe the panic and fear surrounding it are created. Our government has shut down a thriving economy for a virus that has a survival rate of more than 99 percent. Even the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released information not long ago stating that 94 percent of the 170,000 (at that time) who had died, die WITH COVID-19, not FROM the virus. So, at the time, less than 10,000 had died FROM the virus. The others had died with an average of 2.6 other comorbidities. But the CDC said that all the deaths were counted in the FROM statistics.

That should bother all of us. Small communities such as ours in Union Parish have been negatively impacted by the shutdowns due to this virus. Yes we have lost friends and loved ones. Our own Luke Letlow died recently with COVID. Yes many people have missed work due to testing positive for it. But, many have also had to endure quarantine due to contact tracing, who have never tested positive or displayed any symptoms.

I am convinced that many of these “precautions” have nothing to do with our safety. For example, high school wrestlers are allowed to wrestle, which includes rubbing their sweat on each other and probably swapping a little spit along the way, but they are not allowed to shake hands afterward. In fact, there is no evidence that COVID-19 has been passed during any athletic competition.

Just a day or two after our own governor sent us back to Phase 2, he was photographed at the Baton Rouge Country Club, unmasked, visiting with friends less than a foot apart, with his arm around them. If this virus were as deadly as advertised, our top officials would be isolating more than they are telling us to. Many of our federal officials are caught off camera without masks and not social distancing.

To be honest, if I lived somewhere like New York City I’d probably walk around with a mask and stay home as much as possible. But I (we) don’t live in a metropolis. We live in rural Union Parish.

We just need to act responsibly and keep our businesses open. Wear a mask if a business requires it, wear one in a hospital or a doctor’s office. Early on we were told that if you wear a mask and stay at least six feet apart, you should be safe. So, wear a mask if it makes you feel safe. Stay six feet away from everyone else. But don’t place your fears on me. I wear a mask when required. If I’m not wearing a mask I make sure not to get close to others.

Think about this; most people who aren’t wearing masks aren’t being tested unless they get sick. So, where do you think all the positive tests are coming from?

But, the number one issue that made me lose complete trust in our federal government was our national election. So much rhetoric and so many lies from both sides, it’s impossible to believe any of it. I’m not sure our government represents the American people anymore.

Here’s the point; no matter what side of the aisle you are on, one thing is important, think for yourself. Don’t believe and follow blindly.

Byron Avery is a Louisiana Tech Journalism graduate and serves as General Manager and Publisher for The Gazette.