Are we better off today?
Ronald Reagan asked an important question during his 1980 presidential campaign. "Are you better off today than you were four years ago?"
On Sunday, Florida (population 21.8 million) had 15,000 positive COVID-19 tests. South Korea (population 51.3 million) has a total of less than 14,000 since the start of the pandemic.
Other countries are opening up, what have they done that we have not? The most successful countries prepared ahead of time based on the recommendations of their public health experts and continue to follow new recommendations as indicated; had reliable tests ready to confirm, quarantine, and contact trace patients thus safely limiting the lockdown areas and preventing many from having to lockdown the entire country; had a consistent national effort to inform their people of the threat and what was expected of everyone (wearing masks, social distance, hygiene); and provided live saving protective equipment for their healthcare workers rather than force local governments into the “Hunger Games” approach of bidding against each other to try to obtain these critical supplies that were, and now appear in some states, to be in short supply.
Without this approach there will be more and more illness, death, and economic destruction. Are we as a nation better off today?
Nora McDermott Lewis, CNM
Doing the 'don's' bidding
Corruption at the highest level. President Trump commutes Roger Stone's sentence after a jury found him guilty. Prosecutors recommended a sentence of 8-9 years. Attorney General Barr said the sentence was too harsh and that he didn't discuss it with the President (sure).
Underlying prosecutors resign in protest. Barr has been enabling the President, protecting him from prosecutors and now the President has freed a convicted criminal. He got rid of the Attorney General in New York that was investigating Trump's illegal activities. Barr is now in the process of removing two other prosecutors that are investigating Trump activities.
Michael Flynn pleads guilty to two crimes and while waiting for sentencing, Barr recommends the charges be dropped. Prosecutors resign.
If you believe Barr is acting on his own, you need to wake up. He along with all other lackeys do the don's bidding. This is not a movie, this is real life but resembles the "Godfather" movie series. It is a shame the current administration chanting "Make America Great Again" is only including themselves and those who do their bidding and excluding the rest of us.
COVID-19 demands stricter code enforcement
Thank you Laura Place for the informative, eye-opening article you posted on July 8 regarding Santa Maria code compliance enforcement.
I have been informed that not only do we seem to have a challenge enforcing codes but also have current housing codes that have needed revision for some time.
The current housing codes encourage crowded housing conditions to be maintained here in Santa Maria. It is obvious that this places our community members at higher risk for COVID-19. Therefore, now, with evident escalating COVID-19 cases and casualties, these housing codes deserve another close look for revision.
Please, City of Santa Maria council members, collaborate with the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department on the best practices and develop more current guidelines that promote reduction in communicable disease spread.
Please develop codes for our current place in time, to be enforced, that further limit the number of individuals allowed to live within a designated square footage, and provide for more adequate numbers of bathrooms per individuals living in a residence space.
Further, this type of information should be shared more transparently, outside of city council meetings as public health announcements, for the public to share and further assist with code compliance.
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