Governor Ron DeSantis
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Living in Miami, I understand that tourists and residents seek sun and fun, and that the economy relies in great part on full hotels, restaurants and bars. Perhaps that’s partly why Florida was one of the last states to put in place restrictions to battle Covid-19.
Now, with exponential spread of an uncontrolled coronavirus, with one American dying of Covid-19 every minute, hospitals in Florida, as around the country, are filling up fast.
With Florida close to reporting one million cases of Covid, and despite pleas and criticism from scientists, healthcare workers and Floridians, Governor Ron DeSantis has begun the state’s third phase of pandemic measures, allowing restaurants and bars to open at 100 per cent capacity. It follows the much criticized herd immunity approach taken by former Trump coronavirus advisor Dr. Scott Atlas, who resigned on Monday.
And although face masks are proven to be a simple, effective way to prevent the spread of Covid-19, DeSantis just extended an executive order first issued in September, preventing local governments from fining residents who refused to wear face masks, or from closing restaurants not complying with coronavirus measures.
This makes mandates unenforceable during the worst phase of the pandemic — the growing “surge within the surge” as Dr. Fauci put it over the weekend, in a crucial time before vaccines will be widely available.
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