Pay very close attention, because this is important: Saying that we overreacted to the COVID-19 pandemic is not the same as saying we should have done nothing.
There is a wide diversity of opinion on how we should have reacted to COVID-19. Yes, there were some people who denied that the virus was serious and opposed every public health measure. There are others who supported some of the policies but thought others were too heavy-handed. There are still others who supported most policy but opposed only the most draconian measures, and there are still others who support every policy and think more needs to be done. In fact, within each policy – gathering limits, mask mandates, closing schools and closing businesses – there are a wide variety of opinions on each.
This has been my frustration throughout the last eleven months as we have dealt with this thing. Not only that some people are unreasonable in their policy views on one extreme or the other, but that many people with more mixed views are lumped together with the extremes of one side or the other. In some cases, this is just outright dishonesty intended only to smear. In other cases, is is evidence of a cult mentality, especially among some of those who support more restrictive policy.
Here is an idea: Instead of assuming you “know” what someone thinks about COVID-19 policy, actually ask him what he thinks. You might be surprised by the answer. This works well not only for pandemic mitigation policy, but many other issues and many other policy debates as well. You might actually be surprised by what you find out when you are legitimately curious, instead of making unfounded assumptions.