According to Vermonters who reelected the Republican Governor Scott overwhelmingly in a very blue state, he has been doing a great job leading us through the pandemic. I agree. “But,” I thought, “saying I can’t go for a socially distanced walk in the woods with a friend goes a step too far.” Especially when I was looking forward to exactly such a walk.

“We know that outdoor transmission isn’t much of a problem,” I fumed. “The resurgence is because of a bunch of spoiled brats going to a bar, some unmasked Halloween parties, and car-pooling to and from a hockey arena. Why do I have to be punished? I’m going to walk with my friend, anyway. Go ahead and arrest me.”

And then I heard what I sounded like. Just like the idiot who won’t wear a mask because “if you’re going to get Covid, you’re going to”. Just like the people who have an unalienable right to party wherever and whenever. And I thought about the people whose businesses are failing because it’s not safe for them to be open, the people who’ve lost their jobs, the people who do keep on working at risk to themselves because we need them to be working.

Then I realized I don’t get to make my own rules or draw my own line during an emergency.


(1) comment


The Governor doesn't have the authority under the Constitution to "order" citizens to do anything, much less prohibit family gathering (or walks in the woods). He has said in the past that he's "not a fan" of mandates. Yet, he turns around and issues......mandates.

He has every right and responsibility to keep us informed and to advise, even urge that we follow the recommended guidelines (although, the "experts" themselves have appeared remarkably unsure what works and what doesn't), but he lacks the power to force changes to personal behavior.

There is no "Covid Clause" or "Pandemic Provision" in the Constitution allowing for arbitrary suspension of protected rights by government, simply upon that same government declaring the existence of an "official emergency" or "national crisis". You've been in politics long enough to know there's ALWAYS another "crisis". We're nearly 9 months into "two or three weeks to flatten the curve". If the precedents set over this time are allowed to stand without protest, what restrictions will the next "crisis" bring?

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