Idolizing rights and ignoring responsibilities

President* Trump,

This is going to be short because the day got away from me and I’m toast.

I read an article in the WP (Meagan Flynn & Marisa Iati) this morning about Georgia Governor, Brian Kemp, and his executive order voiding all mask mandates in the state and the lawsuit he’s bringing against Atlanta mayor Keisha Bottoms for defying his executive order and came away with nothing but contempt for Mr. Kemp. Although he’s encouraging Georgians to wear masks because the public health benefits are clear, he wants to disallow mandating mask wearing ostensibly because it’s impossible to completely enforce it.

Flynn and Iati were just reporting the facts of the situation and didn’t weigh in on how lame the reasoning is and how it signals how chicken shit Kemp is. It’s abundantly clear that he doesn’t want to cross you (you *&%$*&*#!? piece of work) and he doesn’t want to cross the Republican voters you and your Foxy hench-people have brainwashed. It’s somehow preferable for thousands more people living in Georgia to contract covid-19 and die than to make an unpopular public health call.

I’m sure others have already compiled lists of things that we have laws and rules about that are not completely enforceable in much the same way mask wearing is not completely enforceable, but that are on the books because having them on the books helps to safeguard the public, but I thought I’d share the handful I’ve thought of so far. Here goes…..

Seatbelts / driving speeds / not texting while driving / not using a phone while driving unless it’s hands free / jaywalking / cannabis use (in some jurisdictions) / underage smoking / underage drinking / drinking and driving / child abuse / assault (particularly domestic violence) / rape / police brutality / hate speech / littering / shoplifting / tax evasion

I’m not going to bother asking you whether you think it would be a good idea to do away with laws meant to decrease the incidence of the infractions and crimes noted above because I’m quite certain you’d be down with repealing all of them (seriously, all of them) if you could. But we have laws meant to deter these behaviors because too many of us are self-centered barbarians and we want to do whatever the f*ck we want to do, consequences to others be damned. The reality that these laws can’t be enforced 100% of the time is not a reason not to have them.

And here we are with people going to the mat refusing to wear masks that would keep them, their loved ones, and the public at large safe and would help to get the country back on its feet because it infringes on their Rights. We sure as shit fuss about our Rights a lot, but what about our responsibilities? What about our responsibilities to ourselves, to our families, our communities, the planet?

We idolize our rights and ignore our responsibilities at our individual and collective peril.

May we be safe and responsible.
May we be willing to sacrifice and be inconvenienced for the greater good.
May we be strong and healthy enough to shoulder our fair share of the burden.
May we not accept leaders who fail to bring out the best in us.

Sincerely,
Tracy Simpson

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