If many more politicians viewed the coronavirus crackdown the way Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman has viewed it, America may have avoided plummeting into economic devastation with tens of millions of people losing their jobs and with many small businesses closed down never to reopen due to the financial hit taken by their owners.
Many Americans may also have retained their ability to exercise freely individual rights, such as by traveling where they choose, visiting with friends and family, and taking other actions local, state, and national governments have forbade in the name of countering coronavirus.
In a new interview at Fox 5 television of Las Vegas, Goodman explains that early on the city of Las Vegas asked to be “a control group,” like in an experiment, where coronavirus-related state mandates would not be imposed. That request was denied, and Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak imposed draconian restrictions statewide in the name of countering coronavirus. Included were March 17 and March 20 orders mandating the closing of many businesses that Sisolak declared are “nonessential.” This resulted in Las Vegas being, as Goodman puts it, “closed down.”
Goodman makes clear in the interview her support for the city immediately being opened completely. Unlike the governor of her state and the governors of many other states, Goodman boldly stands up for letting people again exercise their rights, including by leaving their homes and engaging in commerce, without risk of punishment even though there is a health threat from coronavirus. And she is refreshingly free of the “reasonably” refrain many politicians are repeating. That refrain is their way of saying they will make sure their promised reopening of the economy and lifting of mandates barring the exercise of individual rights occur at a glacial pace while Americans continue to suffer in the grip of draconian restrictions and the economy continues to disintegrate.
“Just tragic” is how Goodman describes the situation in Las Vegas under state government restrictions put in place in the name of fighting coronavirus. Talking about the massive increase in unemployment in the city, Goodman mentions, “I see so many of these people who’ve lost employment in the hospitality business, they’re going to become part of the homeless population.”
Goodman’s message to the governor of Nevada is that Las Vegas should be opened back up. She states:
We know what we have built here, all of us together, in a very, very diverse, caring community. And all we ask is please give us the opportunity to get back to work, to earn an honest dollar, and be able to support our grandparents and support our parents and support our children.
Further, asserts Goodman, the ongoing coronavirus crackdown Is pushing Las Vegas toward a point of no return. “Unless we get somewhere to turn this around soon, there’s no point down there that you will be able to turn it around,” she states.
Goodman notes that in the past “we’ve never shut down,” from when she was a little girl and the fear of polio was “consuming the entire country” through the decades since when “we had virus after virus.” As Goodman goes on to explain, people have long managed to carry on with their lives even while threats, from diseases and otherwise, exist. She states:
And every single day of every one of our lives we don’t know if we’re coming home that afternoon, whether we’re going to have a brain embolism or we’re going to have a cardiac problem or get hit by a truck or slip in the bathtub or get mugged by somebody.
Asked about the governor not thinking the state can be reopened safely yet, Goodman answers that “there’s no guarantee when to open safely.” Continuing, Goodman declares, “I am just saying let’s go forward, do it now.”
Goodman proceeds in the interview to make clear that she wants a real reopening of her city, not some partial reopening weighed down by a bunch of restrictions. Asked whether there is “any practical way to keep people safe, to social distance, in your opinion but reopen at the same time,” Goodman replies with a very liberty-oriented answer instead of the government micromanagement response we have heard from many politicians in their talk of “reasonably” taking “incremental” steps for lifting of the coronavirus crackdowns they have imposed. Goodman’s answer focuses on individual responsibility:
I think it’s all about being a civilized community, and you learn that when you’re going to sneeze or cough you cover your mouth, that you do your best to respect the rights of others, and if you’re sick you stay home, you don’t go to work, … and that you have the sense of why God gave us brains is to use our brains on what is respectful of others in a socialized, civilized community with laws and rules.
Goodman continues emphasizing individual responsibility when asked about tourists visiting a reopened Las Vegas. Goodman states:
Everybody has a choice. You don’t want to come to Vegas, don’t come. You don’t want to leave your house, don’t leave your house. And you will stay in your house for the rest of your life it that’s your choice. The reality is so many of the people, so many, many are consistently out there wanting to get back to work and have a life and be able to shop again and be with friends and touch and hug each other.
In the interview, Goodman presents a succinct request for Las Vegas as follows: “Give us the right to live our lives, and let Las Vegas come back to be the convention and hospitality center that it is.” More and more people across the country are desiring that something similar happens soon where they live as well.
Watch Goodman’s interview here:
Reprinted with permission from the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.