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Let’s just file this one in the you-can’t-make-this-stuff-up category. The medical community has consistently told us that in order to mitigate the coronavirus pandemic outbreak, everyone must remain home as much as possible and stringently social distance from friends and loved ones to save lives.
Well, that was then and this is now. The Peace March in downtown Houston Tuesday in memory of George Floyd brought out an estimated crowd of 60,000 people. I’m pleased to say that it was, in fact, mostly peaceful but what about the sheer size of the crowd in attendance? Was no one concerned about the coronavirus that is still with us and its potential to spread among the protesters? There is one lone voice who spoke out about public health safety while all the other public officials in Houston were front and center to get recognition for participating. I’ll get to that in a minute.
The march in Houston began at Discovery Green – an 11-acre public park – and ended at City Hall. Speeches were made by public officials from Mayor Turner, Reps. Sheila Jackson-Lee and Al Green. The event was organized by the Houston Chapter of Black Lives Matter and local rapper Trae tha Truth (given name Frazier Thompson III). As I said, it was mostly peaceful with only some sporadic moments of discord between police (including Police Chief Acevedo) and protesters. Bricks and rocks were removed by city workers earlier in the day along the route. Despite what the media narrative is from the left, Black Lives Matter protests often turn very violent and apparently plans for this one to do the same was stopped before it started.
I watched some of the coverage on television and I listened to NPR’s coverage of the march in the car as I ran some errands, mostly to monitor any violent outbreaks. The moderator on the radio asked a reasonable question – what about social distancing and personal safety measures due to the coronavirus? The reporter at the scene noted that about 80% of the protesters he was seeing were wearing facial masks. Some groups were handing out masks to those who didn’t have them. But there was no way for the crowd to do any kind of social distancing.
The Texas Medical Center is the largest medical center in the world. It consists of 54 medicine-related institutions, including 21 hospitals and four medical schools, seven nursing schools. You get the picture – it’s huge. So, many voices mean many personal opinions. In this case, many of the medical professionals decided to side with the protesters over public health concerns. What happened to “First, do no harm”? For months they have been busy putting the fear of God into us over the seriousness of the coronavirus. Lives have been ruined because the city shut down, following orders from elected officials.
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