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credit: babylonbee

Many years ago I attended a literature seminar at the University of Wyoming.  Before classes began, there was a reception with snacks, refreshments and general mingling.  I hadn’t spoken more than a few sentences when a female teacher I didn’t know exclaimed in delight: “You’re British!”  Born in South Dakota, I wasn’t affecting a British accent.  I was surprised, until it dawned on me: I was actually enunciating—clearly pronouncing consonants.  Most people don’t.  I did—and do—at least in part because of my classical training as a singer, but also because I’ve always liked language—words—and enjoy the sounds and timbre.  “No; I just try to use consonants,” I replied.  It took a bit of work to convince her I really wasn’t from England.

Every day in the classroom, kids would say something like: “Mr. McDaniel, munsooou gdrioooaaa, duunuuoooaaaaee?”  To which I would reply:  “Once again, please, but this time with consonants.”  They’d flush with mild embarrassment, laugh, and make themselves reasonably well understood.

Then there came the age of masking, and consonants are pretty much a thing of the past.  With the advent of face diapers, I also realized how much I’ve come to rely on a sort of lip reading with non-consonant speakers.  This, too, comes from decades of singing instruction.  The precise formation of sounds and pitch with the mouth is a lifelong study.  No, gentle readers, I’m not going deaf in my old age.  My hearing is still acute, but put a layer of cloth over the face of someone who never enunciated well in the first place, and life becomes tragicomically more difficult.

I’ve had enough.

What do we know about Covid-19?  Not much.  How many Americans have died from the virus?  We don’t know.  Hospitals, deprived of patients by lockdowns and other bizarre, anti-liberty regulations, get more money if they treat Covid patients, so everyone and their dog got Covid and everybody that died in the last year died of Covid.  We simply can’t trust the statistics.

Can we trust the CDC and its demigod, Dr. Fauci?  Well, let’s see.  First he told everyone masks were absolutely unnecessary, and we should just go out and act normally.  Then masks were salvation itself.  Then he admitted he lied about masks.  Then he flipped and flopped and waffled and wiggled, and now we’re supposed to wear two masks—three would be even better—and maybe—possibly, we might get back to some sort of “normal” by 2022.  Oh sure; we can absolutely trust him.  His credibility is long past its expiration date.

Now that we have no idea who is actually running the Executive Branch of the federal government—it certainly isn’t Joe Biden—trust is in even shorter supply.  Before the election, Joe had a plan—Trump didn’t, but Joe did, by God.  After the election, Joe admitted he had no plan and couldn’t do anything to stop the virus.  Then he claimed there was no vaccine or distribution plan, despite having been vaccinated himself only weeks earlier.  Even Fauci called bullshit on that.

One thing we do know is Donald Trump mobilized industry and government and produced three vaccines as much as five times faster than any in history.

We washed our hands until the skin fell off, and then we learned that’s not how the virus is transmitted—probably—so that was unnecessary—probably.

But what of the vaccines?  If we’ve had the virus—Mrs. Manor and I have—do we need the vaccine?  No one really knows.  If we take the vaccine, how long does immunity last?  No one knows.  Will it be lifetime immunity, a few years, or do we need to be vaccinated every year?  No one knows.  Mrs. Manor has had both shots.  I’ll take my second within a week.  Vaccines are a good thing, despite everything we don’t know about this one at the moment.

Experience has seemingly taught us children are very unlikely to catch the virus and equally unlikely to spread it.  Apparently, only the elderly and infirm are in real danger, and the overall survival rate is 98%+, which doesn’t sound like a particularly deadly contagion by historical standards.  My case, at the tender age of 66, was quite mild.  Every case of the flu I’ve ever had was much, much—please-let-me—die-now-worse.  Yes I know: anecdotal, but hey, that’s as good as the government’s anecdotes.

We’ve also been reminded power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.  I’ve lived in Texas, and now Wyoming, during the Covid hysteria, so have been spared the worst aspects of petty politicians going mad with power, and mad they have been.  We’ve learned D/S/Cs given “emergency” powers will absolutely use them to grossly violate the Constitution and strip every individual liberty they can, particularly from those not of their party.  They’ve taken particular delight in treading on religious liberty.  It’s plain such people, given the least opportunity, become despotic dictators, and they take very personally indeed any peasant daring to push back against their enlightened rule.  Fun facts to know and tell.

We’ve also learned that a great many law enforcement officers will enforce unconstitutional executive orders and mandates.  They will arrest people for sitting in their vehicles in church parking lots, listening to sermons on the radio.  They’ll arrest people for surfing on a beach where there is no one else for a hundred yards.  As much as most Americans support the police, they lost a great deal of respect and support enforcing the dictates of Whitmers, Cuomos, Newsoms, Waltzs and other tinpot tyrants.

We also learned just how angry, arrogant, and self-righteous some people can become.  We’ve endured the rage of self-appointed mask and social distancing monitors, and also learned, thankfully, most Americans won’t do violence to such people, deserving though they might be.  We really are a non-racist, tolerant people.

We know, beyond any doubt, filling nursing homes with the infected kills thousands.  What we don’t know is whether the governor—governors?—that did that will pay any price for that willful slaughter.

We also know the lockdowns, which have devastated the lives of millions of Americans and the economies of entire states, appear to have had no positive effect.  States that didn’t lockdown, like South Dakota, Florida and others, did no worse, and in many respects, better than those that did.  All that loss for nothing, and they’re sooooo reluctant to give up all that success.

We can be reasonably sure the virus came from China, probably the Wuhan lab.  We can be reasonably sure because the Biden pseudo, temporary-administration is doing all it can to cover up that source, and to assist China in every way possible.

We also know keeping kids out of school was insane.  We’ll be seeing the effects of that for a generation or more.  It won’t be pretty.

We know, if we had any doubt, teacher’s unions care nothing for children, but a very great deal for political power and money, and so do the D/S/C politicians for whom they are parasites, or is it the other way around?  They’re both parasites of taxpayer money.

We’ve been degraded, denied, manipulated and deprived of essential liberties, and no emergency can justify that, particularly one that was never a real emergency, but another “crisis” D/S/Cs, and some Republicans absolutely did not let go to waste.  One might be forgiven for thinking D/S/Cs seized on the virus to exercise power over Americans like never before.  One needs no forgiveness for thinking they used that power to rig the presidential, and likely, some senatorial, elections.

In the name of public health, we played along with absolute insanity.  Graciously allowed to patronize restaurants, we were told we had to wear masks from the door to the table, but the virus was apparently no longer virulent once seated.  We played along with the idea pot dispensaries, liquor stores, casinos, big box stores and grocery stores were contagion free, but churches, schools, even the great outdoors, were teeming with instant death.

In so doing, we debased ourselves.  Are we any longer worthy of being known as the land of the free and the home of the brave?

What if this was all part of a larger plot?  What if this was a trial run, a way to find out just how far Americans can be pushed, whether the frog can be boiled little by little until it’s too late?  If so, they failed.  Americans are generous people.  They’ll give of themselves, sacrifice much for the common good, for public health, but God help the hoaxers when Americans discover they’ve been hoaxed.  God help them if they think this translates to Americans rolling over for wholesale despotism.  Come for our guns, our free speech, our religious liberty, see how that works out.

Covid-19, like the flu and a variety of other viruses will always be with us.  They always have been.  Covid will mutate, as viruses do.  Some will be more destructive, most, less destructive.  Never before in living memory have we essentially destroyed our country, impoverished our people, and retarded the intellectual growth of our children for an entire year in response to a seasonal virus.  Our response to this virus must not become a precedent, lest we willingly consent to the never-ending destruction the response to the virus has wrought, destruction much in excess of whatever the actual death toll will eventually be.  And yes, more will die from this, and a variety of other viruses in the future.  That’s part of being human.

We used to understand that sort of thing.  We used to know there are no guarantees of tomorrow.  We used to accept we’re not in control and never have been.  Certainly, we don’t take stupid risks, we don’t tempt fate, but living—not merely existing–requires actually living, not huddling fearfully in our homes, watching our bank accounts dwindle and disappear, hoping against hope we don’t contract a virus with a 98%+ survival rate.  Living requires social contact, because we’re intensely social animals.  Living requires telling politicians when they’ve gone too far and making them, forevermore, regret it.

It’s long past time to say: NO MORE!  Take your idiotic little masks, which we know don’t work, and stuff them where the sun don’t shine.  We’re not huddling in our homes anymore.  We’re taking back our birthright.  Countless men and women have died for our liberties, and we dishonor them and ourselves with our cowardice, by behaving not as free men and women, but as cowering subjects, begging stupid, even evil politicians for the exercise of unalienable rights.

It’s time to be Americans again.