Angry at Anthony Fauci?

I am seeing a lot of conservative anger at Dr. Anthony Fauci over the economic shutdown.

Chillax. None of this is his fault. He is operating in his field of specialty. He is a disease expert, not an economic expert.

He is offering his best advice to contain the novel coronavirus, which is what he was hired to do. It is our leaders’ responsibility to listen to both Fauci and economists, and then balance lives lost and destroyed by COVID-19 against lives lost and destroyed by the economic shutdown.

If you are angry at Fauci for the quarantine orders, you are angry at the wrong person. He’s not the one with political authority.

What action should be taken on “wet markets” in China?

I have spent 23 years fighting “animal rights” extremists who want to radically restrict what we are allowed to eat. As a Christian, I take the Bible’s enforcement of Christian liberty in Acts 10:9-16 and 1 Timothy 4:1-5 very seriously. Because of this, I immediately and reflexively resisted all calls to restrict and/or ban so-called “wet markets” in China where wild animals (including bats, wild cats and Pangolins, which look like armadillos) are sold and eaten.

However, is there a role for government to prohibit eating certain animals, if consuming those animals is proven to be tied to viral or bacterial outbreaks that threaten human life? The old libertarian saying is that you can swing your fist until you touch my nose, but if your dietary practices are causing a global pandemic and potentially hundreds of thousands of deaths, then you do not have the right to eat whatever you please. Continue reading

I told you so

A warning not heeded:

The conservatives now worried about the government’s increased power during the novel coronavirus pandemic are the same people who praised the same expansion of government power under the Patriot Act. I told you these powers would be abused.

Source: Twitter.

Civil disobedience, Romans 13 and the Communist Virus

I am concerned that some Christians are far too eager to reflexively obey the government’s quarantine orders during the COVID-19 outbreak, and it seems that many of them do not recognize that there are ominous and frightening storm clouds on the horizon. We need to watch this carefully and closely guard our liberties, especially our First Amendment and Second Amendment rights.

But some hard-line libertarians also need to develop a sense of proportion regarding the Communist Virus and understand that there are times when a legitimate crisis requires the state to use emergency powers that would never be appropriate in times of peace and prosperity. This is true even in a nation like the United States where we have a Constitution that forbids government from infringing on our rights.

Typhoid Mary was a healthy woman who unknowingly spread a potentially deadly disease to dozens of people, which resulted in fatalities. When you hear people argue that the government does not have the authority to quarantine healthy people during a viral pandemic, she is a good counter-example.

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Revisiting the federal “anti-lynching” law

We do not need to pile laws on top of laws to make sure that things that are already illegal are extra illegal, which is why we do not need a federal law against lynching. The proponents of a federal anti-lynching law are extremely pessimistic in a way that does not match reality. Those are the two primary faults with the objections in the comments for my letter to the editor last week:

Same argument could be made about bank robbery.

Well, yeah. The argument for prosecuting crime at the local level applies to bank robbery, burglary, assault, speeding, rape, fraud and almost every other crime. Very few crimes should be prosecuted at the federal level. Federal prosecution should be reserved for things like treason and armed insurrection.

I guess you haven’t been poaying attention lately, but there have been some vocally active groups proposing new lynchings.

This is what I mean by saying proponents of this law are “extremely pessimistic in a way that does not match reality.” Of course there are evil people out there, but there is no chance that they will come to power in the foreseeable future. Does she actually think that we will have lynching proponents controlling state legislatures soon? If so, then let’s see some names. Which states? Which political leaders?

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Shamefully dishonest coronavirus propaganda

One of the more frustrating things about the coronavirus is the total inability of some to see nuance or the fact that all public policy has negative consequences. The idea that anyone who questions locking everything down forever does not care about lives lost is both a despicable slander and extremely simplistic thinking. The world is not black and white, and there are always multiple angles to consider in policy.

Max Boot, in typical partisan fashion, blames “right wingers” for questioning if “the cure is worse than the disease” regarding quarantines to slow the spread of the Communist Virus. Boot ignores the fact that the New York Times published an editorial asking the same question. It is only bad now that President Donald Trump has asked the question, because “Orange Man Bad.”

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Respecting the civil magistrate’s authority

I am seeing a lot of posts on social media by Christians (especially Reformed Christians) about obeying the civil magistrate’s quarantine orders in the novel Coronavirus epidemic. This is good. We live in a time where we hate authority, whether it be the legitimate exercise of authority in the home, of the church, and by the government. But many of these exhortations need to take a wider view.

Yes, the civil magistrate has authority to restrict movement during a viral outbreak to slow the spread of the virus and keep the health care system from being overwhelmed. We only have so many intensive care beds and ventilators. But does that mean that we should not question authority and whether every restriction is necessary? Should we not question whether some policies go too far? Should we not question when the restrictions are going to end?

Yes, we should respect the government’s legitimate exercise of authority, which God has delegated to them for our benefit. We should thank God that our leaders are trying to protect the most vulnerable, and submit to their orders. No one is advocating full-scale disobedience of quarantine orders right now. Let’s have that in mind and keep a sense of proportion.

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