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As I See It

Government fails the coronavirus test

Scott Robert Shaw



Clearly, we can’t count on our politicians to keep us safe during a pandemic. President Donald Trump made clear early on that the federal government would not be taking the lead on America’s response to the coronavirus. Instead, he chose to leave that up to each Governor to decide how best to respond in their state. But in some states, like Wisconsin, when the Governor instituted a plan to keep citizens safe, he was hamstrung in his efforts. The state Supreme Court ruled that the extension of Wisconsin’s safer-at-home order was unlawful, and then threw it out. Legislative leaders claimed they wanted to work with the Governor on a statewide plan, before punting on that idea. That has left the state with no consistent rules about being around large crowds of people, traveling or whether businesses should reopen. As a result, we have a patchwork of policies, with some businesses throwing their doors open immediately after the court’s ruling. Other businesses are still closed, as they determine their future plans. Some counties have adopted their own restrictions, while others, like La Crosse county, have not. The answer to the worst health crisis in our lifetimes, at both the federal and state level, seems to be, “You guys figure it out.” If its up to us to make our own rules, then what do we need these politicians for anyway?

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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