What we are seeing in this COVID-19 shutdown is a huge perversion of the purpose of government. According to our Constitution the purpose of government is to protect the individual rights of it's citizens. This includes many things one of which is its ability to quarantine citizens who are infected by a disease during an epidemic.
Throughout history nations have quarantined infected people from the general public. But what is happening now in many states like California, New York, Michigan and others is that they are quarantining everyone including the healthy. This is exactly opposite of what should be happening and is counter productive.
You don't destroy the economy of a nation to fight an epidemic. It will destroy more human life than the virus. President Trump has asserted he doesn't want the cure to be worse than the disease. I agree. And it won't be if we end this shutdown as soon as possible.
Nor do we need to wait a year for a vaccine. This virus will spread through the population despite the efforts of various state governors. The sooner this happens the safer we'll be next year. People will develop individual immunities which leads to herd immunities. This is a good thing. This virus will be back next fall. Now is the time to reopen the most dynamic market place on the planet. Not this summer.
This government enforced shutdown is unwise for other reasons as well. Every doctor on this planet will tell you that moderate exercise helps keep our immune system up. Our immune system will protect us from most diseases but only if it is up to the task. However, being told to stay home or shelter in place is going to prevent many people from getting that needed moderate exercise thus weakening their immune systems. Not good.
I've read that COVID-19 is very contagious, that it spreads fast. In a way that may be good. It could mean that it will run its course quicker than previously thought. But not if we don't let it. I've also read that early data suggest it will be less deadly than the seasonal flu. Numbers show that most people who get it recover from it. Let's hope so.
I mentioned above a perversion of the purpose of government. In this crisis our government is being transformed from a rights protector to a rights violator--in the name of protecting us. Protecting our rights means protecting us from violations of those rights. But we have allowed government to grow to such an enormous size that it now wants to protect us from everything including our selves. Well, that's what slave masters do. Not free nations. My next post will be on the nature of a proper government.
In the meantime, here is an excellent essay on why there was such a massive shortage of test kits and N95 masks.