Letters to the Editor: January 8, 2021

Our experiment with anarchy

We were duped. We were told he wasn’t just another corrupt politician. We were told he was a successful businessman and could fix the government using his business know-how. We were told Washington needed shaking up and he would bring an outsider’s approach to draining the swamp and setting things right. We were told he knew all the tricks and loopholes and only he could correct them. We were told he would be a man of the people even though he had always been very rich. We were told he would make America great again.

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It all came home to roost on Wednesday, Jan. 6.

He had complained about American carnage in his inaugural address. This time he brought American carnage into the U.S. Capitol building. There was breaking and entering and destruction and looting and taunting and self-congratulatory smugness. There was also blood and death. Apparently, he has to kill America to make it great again. The vigilante mob was out for vengeance and once in the capitol they climbed and sprawled and stole and loitered. And they loved it.

It turns out he is the con man/grifter that so many always said he was. Those who wanted to give him a chance to see what he could do finally saw what it led to. No sane person could have wanted mob rule. How are we better for this?

John Sucke

Waimea

Mob?

I hope somebody will explain it to me some day why the fire-starting looter vandals in Baltimore, Chicago, Portland, Seattle, etc., were called “peaceful protesters” by the MSM, yet the Pro-Trump people at the U.S. Capitol were called “mob.”

John S. Rabi

Kailua-Kona

Vaccinate ‘at-risk’ population and reopen

A full reopening of the economy does not require the vaccinating people who are not at-risk of severe illness from COVID-19 before returning to normal. The continuing emergency declarations and restrictions are meant to slow the spread of the virus and prevent the health care system from being overwhelmed. We should look at what is necessary to meet that concern and review how similarly infectious diseases are managed.

Between February and Dec. 5, COVID-19 deaths reported to the CDC were just over 266,000. For the same time period, deaths from either pneumonia or influenza were just over 261,000. Nearly equal. This is not to say the coronavirus is like the flu, it is not. But like influenza and pneumonia, it is an infectious disease.

Vaccines have long been available for influenza and pneumonia and are strongly recommended for anyone who is at risk of serious illness from those diseases. They are also recommended as preventative care for everyone.

We know who is most at risk of serious illness from the coronavirus. Healthy individuals generally experience moderate to no symptoms and rarely develop complications requiring hospitalization. Given these basic conditions, once the at-risk population has been vaccinated, they no longer pose a threat to the health care system. Once the health care system is protected, the basis for the emergency declarations is gone.

The risk of illness to the rest of the population is no greater than that presented by the flu or pneumonia. No one has ever suggested that we must limit our gatherings, do social distancing, wear masks, and restrict travel for either of those. Commonsense suggests that the same logic should be applied to COVID-19.

The expenditure of billions of dollars and the months of economic damage done while the vaccine is given to a population of otherwise healthy people is unwarranted and unnecessary. Once the at-risk population is vaccinated, the feared crisis of overburdened hospitals will have been averted. To maintain restrictions after that cannot be justified in any terms.

James R. Mann

Waikoloa

What a day

At the end of the day Wednesday, I say, “What a day!” The victims of Trump’s big lie that the election was fraudulent, storm the Capitol, and Georgia elects the two democratic candidates, turning the Senate over to the Democrats. It blows your mind.

What someone ought to do is explore the psychology behind the success of the big lie technique, where in spite of factual evidence to the contrary, people will believe a proposition that is advanced loudly and often by an authoritative person and his supporters. I don’t think the problem of such people is that they are dissatisfied about something or other, but simply that they fall prey to the technique itself. How do you counter such naive susceptibility? This tendency of people to swallow loud nonsense is the essential problem.

Back to peace and calm.

Mike Keller

Kailua-Kona

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