It is curious why many Americans believe the Republican Party when it claims to be pro-life when every policy they support is deadly to many Americans – including dyed-in-the-wool Republican voters.
Whether it is promoting anti-environmental policies that poison the air and water, or opposing mitigation efforts to save lives during a deadly pandemic, or protecting violent right-wing extremists from criminal prosecution; Republicans can hardly claim they are pro-life. It is true they are pro-zygote, but they are not pro-life by any measure.
Except for a very few Republican governors, most aligned themselves with terrorist-supporting Trump in pretending COVID19 was nothing to be concerned about going back to the pandemic’s early stages.
As of Friday, roughly 524,000 Americans have succumbed to the virus Trump went to extremes to play down as nothing much to worry about. Although it is true that nationwide the death rate is appearing to plateau and in many cases dropping, there are still regions where the infection rate is up. Texas is one of those regions. Over the past two weeks, COVID19 cases in Texas increased by five percent.
Despite the rise in cases, and instead of standing up for the lives of Texas residents, Republican Governor Gregg Abbot defied medical science and said:
“Too many Texans have been sidelined from employment opportunities. Too many small business owners have struggle to pay their bills. This must end. It is now time to open Texas 100%,”
When Abbot said “open Texas 100%,” he means the end of the state’s mask mandate and allowing all businesses to open up as if there is not a deadly, and virulent, pandemic raging across Texas and the nation. According to Abbot, Texans “have mastered the daily habits to avoid getting COVID19” and 5.7 million doses of the COVID19 vaccine have been administered. Sounds impressive, right? Not so fast.
Despite those 5.7 million doses, less than 7% of Texans are “fully vaccinated” and are still at risk of contracting and spreading the virus.
The Editorial Board at the Fort Worth Star Telegram editorial board “blasted Abbot” after his announcement. They asked the prescient questions even though they were well-aware of the answer. In part. the editorial board asked:
“Why do this now? Why, when the news is so good on cases, hospitalizations and vaccine production, increase the danger? Why, with spring break and its associated travel and activity around the corner, send the message that we can let our guard down?
It’s lamentable that the governor can’t show the patience that most citizens have. Instead, he decided to make more illness and death more likely just as the finish line is in sight.”
Abbott’s motivation is no secret. Besides not caring one iota about the health or lives of Texas residents, he is up for re-election in 2022. And, in the back of his mind the possibility of a Republican nomination for president in 2024 is looking mighty appealing.
Abbot has taken heat from the stupid wing of the Texas Republican movement that is religiously loyal to terrible Trump and who, like many rabid Trump acolytes, considers a scientifically proven mitigation effort like wearing a mask “an assault on their personal freedom;” they know it is definitely not a public health measure to save lives.
Saving lives is as far from Abbott’s mind as the Earth is from the Sun despite a horrible lesson Texans faced last Spring and early Summer. In many Republican controlled states, Republican governors dropped or ignored rigid stay-at-home orders and other mitigation efforts implemented specifically to inhibit the spread of Covid-19 because their respective states did not have massive numbers of cases like New York and California. The result was precisely what health experts predicted. COVID Cases, hospitalizations and deaths soared. In Texas, over 44,000 residents perished from the virus trailing only California and New York in total deaths.
So, with an election on the horizon, and COVID cases on the rise, Abbot concluded: “sod the health experts’ warnings” and their liberty stealing mitigation efforts – Texas is 100% open and if more Texans die, then so be it.
Abbot’s actions are typical for Republicans more concerned about their own political futures than their constituents’ lives. When an ungodly number of Americans are being gunned down as if they live in a war zone, instead of enacting sane gun control regulations, Republicans want more firearms on the streets. When the water and air crucial for human life is toxic due to industrial dumping, Republicans deregulate industries prone to poisoning the air and water and let the people die. When every state in the Union enacts power-sharing to provide stable electricity to consumers, Texas says no way – let the people die.
Now, when there is finally a hope that this deadly pandemic can be mitigated so life can get back to something resembling normal, Texas Governor Gregg Abbot flouts medical science warnings and opens up Texas because political power is more important than human life to a so-called pro-life Republican governor.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.