Letter to the Editor

An acquaintance of mine is scared about contact tracing, H.R. 6666 in particular. (Maybe the sixes are triggering her fears about the end times because of that numerology nonsense.) She wants our state to reopen but hates all of the measures that would allow us to do so safely.

By watching countries that dealt with SARS, it was clear from the start that we need to test, trace, and isolate. Evidence from all over the world has now borne out that concept. Germany, South Korea, Taiwan, New Zealand — all are keeping their COVID-19 transmission rates low by doing these things.

We must learn from good evidence, not operate out of fear. We should be willing to do hard things for the greater good, rather than sacrifice the weak for personal convenience.

Please voice your support for H.R. 6666, the TRACE Act. It’s a lifeline for public health as well as the economy.

 

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(3) comments

super_sonic

Did you read the bill, Polly Baker? It has the kind of broad language that can absolutely be used as a way to strip Americans of their liberties.

The bill says the funds would go not just towards testing, but to "monitor the contacts of infected individuals" and "support the quarantine of such contacts". Sec. 2 (a) could absolutely be construed by lawyers as authorizing the government to surveil the activities of civilians and forcibly quarantine individuals simply for being in "contact" (without defining what 'contact' means) with an "infected individual" (without defining what 'infected' means). Furthermore, Sec. 2 (f) (1) (E) authorizes the funds to be disbursed to "a nonprofit organization"... doesn't say anything else about what other qualifications the nonprofit needs to have (like, only those having to do with health services maybe? Nope; any nonprofit can get a piece of a $100 billion of taxpayer money).

This is the PATRIOT Act of the next generation. Remember when they said it was ridiculous to think the government would be listening in on our phone calls and reading our e-mails? And that if you weren't involved in "terrorist" activities then you've got nothing to hide? And then we found out they absolutely were listening in on our phone calls and reading our e-mails, without just cause and regardless of how honest a citizen you were. The TRACE Act, in all it's broad language under the guise of security, is being proposed in the middle of an emotionally and politically charged environment not seen since the fall of 2001, when the PATRIOT Act in all it's broad language was passed under the guise of security.

This letter to the editor demands operating "based on evidence". Evidence is, COVID-19 numbers are inflated from Medicare funding of hospitals reporting individuals with underlying health issues as being COVID cases. Evidence is, this really isn't more devastating than the seasonal flu. Evidence is, this virus- like all viruses- disappears once herd immunity is reached. Evidence is, viruses don't kill people- compromised immune systems do and by strengthening immunity at the cellular level with critical vitamins and nutrients is the way to recover from any viral infection. Evidence is, vaccines are no guarantee to work and pose some undefined but yet significant risk for injury.

Yes, everybody read the bill. This absolutely strips Americans of their civil liberties should the government decide you've been in "contact" with an "infected" individual of what is turning out to be not a threat to humanity but something that's little more than a glorified cold bug.

rednekz

Well said, Joanna. I think most of us would have to agree...

Polly Baker

Thanks Joanna. Absolutely--science and expertise over fears. Here's a link to the bill if people want to check it out for themselves. https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/6666/text?r=2&s=1

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