A Better Region 8: Keeping COVID-19 cases low in March a priority

Published: Mar. 1, 2021 at 7:52 PM CST
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(KAIT) - If you enjoyed the summer of 2020, you are going to love this summer.

That’s because Friday, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced mandates for mask-wearing and other measures meant to keep Arkansans safe during this pandemic would become a suggestion.

“Let me emphasize that because we are changing these directives to guidelines that it means that we are going to see a change in behavior,” Hutchinson said. “And I do not expect to see a change in behavior.”

Yeah, that’s the problem. Too many of us do not want to wear a mask or wear one properly now.

Too many of us want to fight businesses and their employees about the mandates.

Dr. Fauci said it best this weekend when asked specifically about easing restrictions in states, including Arkansas.

“And when people start pulling back on mitigation methods and mitigation activities, you see a real risk of it going back up,” Fauci said. “And it’s not something I’m imagining. Go back and take a look at the surges that we’ve had over the past year. It was always at a time when you wanted to pull back. "

So we all see where this is headed. The good news is this time is different. Active cases and hospitalizations are down.

There’s a reason for that Dr. Fauci eludes to; the health mandates, vaccines, and the possibility that those who have had it have some level of immunity.

Unfortunately, Arkansas lacks in the vaccine rollout compared to other states.

Easing restrictions and too few getting vaccinated smells like this decision was based on politics rather than science.

Gov. Hutchinson did leave one caveat in the announcement.

The restrictions would become suggestions if cases stayed below a certain level by the end of March.

And the governor said everyone would have to step up and be responsible. We hope everyone will step up this time.

Otherwise, we will once again be filling up the hospitals and morgues.

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