Shutdown Madness Must End
Updated: Sep 12
In Proverbs 31:9 the king is advised: “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.” This instructive verse is one that needs to be heard by the politicians and lawmakers of the United States. Right now, millions of Americans are suffering and voiceless, left destitute by the destruction of the lockdown imposed in response to the pandemic.
While COVID-19 has certainly ravaged the lives of thousands of victims, millions more have suffered the psychological and social ravages of the ineffective lockdowns.
Centers for Disease Control Director Robert Redfield commented on a July spike in suicide rates by saying: "There has been another cost that we've seen, particularly in high schools. We're seeing, sadly, far greater suicides now than we are deaths from COVID. We're seeing far greater deaths from drug overdose.” 
Unfortunately, these silent and unreported costs are going unnoticed as the consequences on a human scale rack up, unseen, in the shadows of the American psyche.
We cannot even console ourselves with the idea that the shutdown has been effective.
Arbitrary rules, like the 14 days of quarantine, have been found to be far from fool-proof. For instance, one ship that had a crew quarantine for 14 days prior to its voyage, had cases of COVID-19 appear 35 days after the vessel put out to sea. 
Other rituals appear to be no more than exactly that: superstitious rituals that have little to no benefit in stopping the spread of the virus.
Take six feet of social distancing; one study indicates that the virus spread sixteen feet in a hospital room, demonstrating that the arbitrary number of six-feet social distance is hardly effective and preventing the spread of the virus. 
Worse yet, the mask mandate has led to many wearing neck-gaiters as face masks, which, ironically, may make exhaled particles of the virus smaller and more likely to infect others. 
In short, the misleading advertisements advising people to “save lives” by quarantining, adhering to six feet of social distancing, and wearing cloth masks are, in many ways, just feel-good propaganda. While the country of Sweden has been broadly crucified by media outlets for only imposing a mild lockdown on their nation, the fact is their per-million deaths are much lower than other neighbors, such as Belgium, that imposed stringent lockdowns. 
These guidelines are meant to reassure the public and make them feel like they are doing something but the reality is that the net number of people who contract COVID-19 will only change at a marginal level. This is the entire concept behind “flattening the curve.” 
While a few lives may be saved from the ravages of COVID-19 many more may have been lost to the social upheaval of the shutdown.
The toll this has taken on a human level has not been properly measured. Sadly, things like suffering cannot always be reliably measured by data. Nonetheless, just because suffering is not measurable, that does not make it any less real.
Our “rulers” ought to heed the advice of Proverbs 31 and further consider the wisdom expounded in the New Living Translation of Proverbs 18:13, which says “Spouting off before listening to the facts is both shameful and foolish.”
Officials who have imposed lockdowns out of political fear as opposed to good governance ought to remember that their power is only as stable as the society over which they rule. If they do not consider the grave danger of imbalanced and lopsided COVID-19 policies, they will continue to bring destruction to their own people and immeasurable suffering to the American people.
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 Sandhya Raman, ”Pandemic’s effect on already rising suicide rates heightens worry,” Anchorage Daily News (August 11, 2020), https://www.adn.com/nation-world/2020/08/11/pandemics-effect-on-already-rising-suicide-rates-heightens-worry/
 Andy Gregory, “Coronavirus: Fishermen test positive despite spending 35 days at sea and testing negative before they left,” The Independent (July 16, 2020), https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/coronavirus-argentina-fishermen-trawler-ushuaia-covid19-echizen-maru-a9621716.html
 John A Lednicky, et al., “Viable SARS-CoV-2 in the air of a hospital room with COVID-19 patients,” MedRXiv (August 4, 2020), https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.08.03.20167395v1
 Allyson Chiu, “Wearing a neck gaiter may be worse than no mask at all, researchers find,” The Washington Post (August 11, 2020), https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/wellness/mask-test-duke-covid/2020/08/10/4f2bb888-db18-11ea-b205-ff838e15a9a6_story.html
 Jon Miltimore, “Why Sweden Succeeded in “Flattening the Curve” and New York Failed,” Foundation for Economic Education (July 15, 2020), https://fee.org/articles/why-sweden-succeeded-in-flattening-the-curve-and-new-york-failed/
 “What is "flattening the curve"?” WebMD (August 18, 2020), https://www.webmd.com/lung/qa/what-is-flattening-the-curve