RECALL POLITICS-Of those who initiated the recall of Governor Newsom, 90 percent are registered Republicans. This is their recall, but based on what?
Among the Republican supporters and candidates to replace Newsom there are two recurring issues: tyranny and incompetence. This mantra is paraded out as part of the Republican playbook and was offered in the one debate of Republican candidates (photo above) at the Richard Nixon Library. Also, this reason appears in news articles, newspaper ads, and on television and radio.
There is no mention that this “tyrannical incompetence” is caused by these unprecedented times and the death march of COVID-19. We have no guidebook to follow for this specific virus, which is not just like the flu. It is a monster of death and crippling illness.
Authorities tried, and continue to try to stop the spread of this disease, which has killed more than 617,000 people in the U.S. Many who have survived face a lengthy recovery with loss of lung capacity; heart, liver, and kidney issues; overall lethargy; and diminished mental functions or brain fog.
When COVID first struck, the majority of deaths involved the elderly. But with experience over months, the wearing face masks around the elderly, and in general, and the use of COVID vaccines, the ratio of death to number of cases has been greatly reduced. Now, with the current rise of infections through the Delta variant, these COVID tragedies are striking a greater number of youths and younger adults.
There was a short reprieve, but with the Delta variant the death march is again stomping its boots all over the country.
The science is clear that vaccines do work. Of the new COVID cases, around 90% are the unvaccinated. Face masks do reduce the transmission of the virus and do give some protection to the wearer.
California under Newsom was the first state to undergo lockdown to try to curb the spread of the virus and has been very active in requiring the wearing of face masks. This is what the Republicans call tyranny.
Requiring the wearing of face masks to slow and stop COVID is not tyranny, but an act of caring for others. This is an act of humanity which is greater than any political party, but to Republicans it seems they do not care.
Governors DeSantis of Florida and Abbot of Texas have issued executive orders not allowing any mask wearing mandates. This includes school children while in school. There is DeSantis’ threats to withhold funding if anyone goes against his will. That is a form of tyranny, and worse than Newsom’s so-called tyranny because by denying the rights to mandatory wearing of face mask more children are exposed to a deadly virus which is now striking them at very troubling rates.
Newsom is called incompetent on his handling of the crisis based upon business and the economy. Yet throughout the pandemic, California’s per capital rate of deaths from COVID has remained lower than Florida or Texas’.
This is not incompetence, but California’s policies which have saved lives better than Florida or Texas. It is tragic to loose a business, or loose revenue, but those can be recouped and recovered. Indeed, there are programs to help business owners to recover from their losses.
And it must not be forgotten that while the Republican candidates take Newson task for COVID’s toll on small businesses, the Federal programs to help small businesses were greatly more beneficial to large corporations who swallowed up more than their share of COVID relief money. And typical of many of Trump’s policies, implementation was less than ideal.
This uploading of COVID support money to large businesses and corporations happened during Conservative Republican former President Trump’s time in office. So who has hurt small businesses?
Business losses can be recouped, there can be, and is, recovery.
There can be recovery from getting COVID, but for many, there is no complete recovery. Many are still suffering months after being infected. They need oxygen to breath. Their once healthy heart, liver or kidneys are now compromised, and there is no indication how long these ailments will continue.
Brain fog from COVID turns once vibrant lives into fogs of memory loss and slow thought. These symptoms had been seen mostly in adults, but with the Delta variant now striking the young without mercy, and in increasing numbers, there is no knowing how the lives of COVID infected youth and young adults will be negatively affected.
The worst part of course is, there is no recovery from death due to COVID.
Governor Newsom had missteps, but this was not incompetence. His actions proved to be better than those of the governors of Florida and Texas in saving lives. That is competence.
And despite his so-called business incompetence, California is sitting on a record surplus of funds to fight COVID, to fight the wildfires now scorching the state, to spend more on schools -- and by requiring face masks to try to keep the casualty rate of youth and others low. The state remains the economic powerhouse of the country.
The so-called tyranny and incompetence of Newsom are no worse than Governors DeSantis and Abbot who are by fiat restricting those who know and care -- who on their own, mandate the beneficial act of wearing of face masks.
We are in unprecedented times, with too many refusing the get vaccinated, and with some governors and legislatures prohibiting the wearing of face masks to save lives. More dark times are ahead.
If Republicans feel Newsom is such a tyrant and so incompetent, and are supporting his recall, then this must also be applied to at least Governors DeSantis and Abbot. The recall movement must also begin in Florida and Texas.
(Matthew Hetz is a Los Angeles native. He is a transit rider and advocate, a composer, music instructor, and former member and president and executive director of the Culver City Symphony Orchestra. He is a CityWatch contributor.) Photo: CNN. Edited for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.