When you allow people with less intelligence and common sense to think for you and inform your decisions, the results are seldom good.

And that’s why Iowans — and those traveling through Iowa in the Quad-Cities and throughout the state — need to ignore the abysmal advice of short-sighted Governor Kim Reynolds and trust scientists and their own common sense and good judgement in regard to covid.

Iowans Need To Ignore `Covid Kim' And Practice Covid Common Sense

Memes have been flooding social media and the hashtag #CovidKim has been trending since Gov. Kim Reynolds decided to pull restrictions from Iowa.

Over 5,000 people have died in Iowa since the pandemic began, 60 percent of those in the last three months, according to the Iowa Department of Health.

Sixty percent. Over the last three months.

That’s going back to November, when Reynolds finally started to pay attention to actual science and the fact that her state was becoming a national embarrassment, and put forth a mitigation and shutdown order that was practical and hardly draconian. Many thought she didn’t go far enough, in asking people to mask up, limit the number of people at public events, socially distance, and to impose hours and quarantine measures upon businesses, most notably bars, which have been shown to be some of the worst spots for the spread of covid, according to studies.

But on Friday, even as Iowa was trending, ONCE AGAIN, as one of the worst spots in the country for covid-19 safety, Reynolds decided to make the utterly moronic decision to pull back on all restrictions. And to make it worse, she did so right before Super Bowl Sunday, as health professionals across the country were warning that Super Bowl parties could turn into covid superspreader events and spike up cases.

This also came on the heels of Reynolds, even in her bubble of ignorance, surely being aware that the new, far more virulent strain of covid-19 was here in Iowa and starting to sink its claws in.

It’s hardly surprising that the Associated Press reported on Monday that Reynolds didn’t consult with scientists and health professionals before she decided to sentence hundreds and maybe thousands more Iowans to death with her asinine stupidity and pathetic lack of

Iowans Need To Ignore `Covid Kim' And Practice Covid Common Sense

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds at a recent press conference.

leadership.

And that is essentially what she’s done.

Last week, more than a dozen friends of mine posted on social media about having caught covid, and two people I knew — a friend and a relative — died from it. Those two join over two dozen other people I’ve known — many of whom were well-known around the Quad-Cities arts and media scene — who have died from contracting it.

And the most infuriating and frustrating thing about it is that this entire thing, this entire pandemic, didn’t have to be this bad.

The covid situation has been handled horribly from the start by a cadre of idiots, opportunists, and bubble-headed conspiracy nuts in positions of power who have ignored science and the advice of experts and put the safety of the public at risk through their selfishness and stupidity. Kim Reynolds is one of them. Aside from a few exceptions, she’s largely been on the wrong side of history and science in regard to the pandemic, which is a complete abdication of her responsibility to represent the best interests of her constituents.

And that includes businesses.

There’s been an artificial divide created among businesses and the public throughout this pandemic that’s been nefarious and insidious, as well as contrary to good sense and judgement. The faster the pandemic is under control, the better it is for businesses in the big picture. Ergo, the more decisive and smart the decisions made by politicians to control it, the better. Certainly, businesses and employees were going to take a hit. That was inescapable and out of anyone’s control at the onset of the pandemic. But it’s been the mishandling of the pandemic and

Iowans Need To Ignore `Covid Kim' And Practice Covid Common Sense

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds

response to it which has made things worse for the business sector by unnecessarily drawing it out longer than it needed to be, not to mention politicians being stingy and craven in their lack of substantive support for many small businesses.

However, as I mentioned, this didn’t have to happen. This didn’t have to be this difficult.

Scientists and health professionals, from the start, have advocated simple, common sense measures in regard to slowing the spread and ameliorating the damage and death from it.

Wear a mask.

Practice social distancing.

Wash your hands.

Keep your immune system up — take multivitamins, take vitamin D, take vitamin C, watch your diet and keep good habits.

None of these are difficult. None of them are anything more than common sense. They’re all incredibly simple to do.

And yet when people in positions of power and authority don’t do them, don’t advocate them, and at worse diminish them and the threat of the pandemic, the large number of followers in our population take their cue and do nothing and make things worse. That’s why it’s so imperative for them to set a good example and make good decisions.

There are certainly cases to be made for adjusting tactics in the face of changing information. As more data came in about outdoor activities not being as virulent in regard to the spread of the virus, it would’ve made sense to allow some outdoor sporting activities and other outdoor events. And conversely, as some locations and events became all the more apparent as much higher risk areas for spread — such as bars — it made sense to curtail hours and enact policies to stop the spread. A comprehensive leadership plan would’ve also planned for the lost wages

Iowans Need To Ignore `Covid Kim' And Practice Covid Common Sense

In November,  CDC numbers showed that Iowa was the worst state in the country for covid, and the Quad-Cities was right outside the top 10 worst spots in the country for the spread.

and profits inherent to such moves, and put in place plans to help those negatively impacted. That’s what’s been needed here all along, and despite it being blatantly obvious, it’s been sorely lacking.

On a local and state level, there are ways in which real leaders could make an impact. Go on facts and fact-based data. Listen to healthcare professionals and scientists who are experts in the field. Follow their recommendations. Make your decisions accordingly.

In far too many instances, Kim Reynolds has not only not done so, she’s moved in the opposite direction of all logic and common sense, and data shows that she’s made things worse.

That’s not based on wanton negativity, it’s based on data, facts and extrapolation of both.

Covid numbers throughout the United States are insane and we as a country have just become numb to them to dull the impact. Among the top 10 days marking the one-day greatest losses of life in the history of this country, the majority of them are deaths due to covid. During November, Iowa was named as the worst state in the country for covid, with Cedar Rapids the worst city in the entire U.S. and Iowa holding several of the spots in the top 20 hot spots.

Since Iowa and Illinois went to mitigation measures, Iowa on Nov. 17, and Illinois on Nov. 20, the numbers in both states have slowly sloped downwards. But that hasn’t changed the fact that Iowa’s number of infections has been consistently three times or more larger than Illinois’ number, despite Illinois having roughly four times the population of Iowa. The death tolls are usually roughly the same in terms of daily numbers, which, again, does not look well for Iowa given that their population number is far lower than Illinois and their population density is nowhere near as high.

Iowans Need To Ignore `Covid Kim' And Practice Covid Common Sense

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker at his press conference today.

People certainly gave Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker plenty of blame and grief for putting Illinois under much more restrictive measures. But it worked. Illinois’ numbers have been greatly reduced. Like many countries around the world, Illinois has been able to more safely cut back on mitigations because they took the step of putting those stronger restrictions in place, and so, Pritzker’s move to cut back on restrictions makes sense, based on the falling numbers. But even in the midst of pulling back on the restrictions, Illinois is still encouraging simple, common-sense measures like masks and social distancing.

Reynolds’ decision shows none of Pritzker’s leadership, intelligence, or relation to science and data. It’s a rash and petulant action in contradiction to her own health experts’ recommendations being done seemingly for political reasons, despite the fact that the virus infects and kills folks regardless of their political parties — a fact that, sadly, Reynolds is likely once more going to discover.

However, Iowans don’t have to become victims to the stupidity of covid Kim.

Ignore her, and think for yourselves. Use common sense. Wear masks. Wash your hands. Keep your immune system up. Be smart about the activities you engage in. In lieu of any actual leadership on the part of the governor, you’re going to have to do this yourself.

As I mentioned at the onset of this column, when you allow people with less intelligence and common sense to think for you and inform your decisions, the results are seldom good.

It’s time for intelligent Iowans to show Kim Reynolds what common sense looks like, and, in doing so, show her what real leadership looks like, as well.

Advertisement



Iowans Need To Ignore `Covid Kim' And Practice Covid Common Sense
Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written over 50 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.