In a blistering speech at a city council meeting on Wednesday, Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman said it was time to put the coronavirus shutdown in the rear-view mirror and get Vegas businesses back open. Pleading with the councilmembers and imploring state officials to re-open the Nevada economy, Goodman warned that there was little scientific evidence to show that the shutdown was necessary or even working as intended. Meanwhile, she argued, millions of residents were heading into deep economic peril as a result of the orders.
“This shutdown has become one of total insanity,” Mayor Goodman said. “For there is no backup of data as to why we are shutdown from the start. No plan in place how to move through the shutdown or how to even come out of it.”
Goodman cited conversations she’d had with experts who say that the coronavirus will not go away anytime soon. She said that as long as that is the case, it makes no sense to keep Nevada businesses closed.
“It’s not going to be going away this month, next month, and much like the flu and other viruses that have impacted populations around the world, this virus, or a derivative there of, will be part of what we work through going forward,” she said.
“Tragically, we have already lost, to this virus, 128 individuals in Nevada,” Goodman continued. “But let me tell you, with a population of 3.2 million living in Nevada, those whom we have lost represent less than a half of one percent of our population, which has caused us to shut down our entire state and everything that makes Nevada unique.”
Goodman said that the economic shutdown was only compounding the misery already felt by the state.
“These are families that no longer have the ability to buy food for their children and other loved ones,” she said. “Pay their bills. Pay their rent. Pay their mortgage. Pay their car payment. Or enjoy the life that they had prior to this shut down. Small businesses and those on week-to-week paychecks have been forced to close. Entire savings that were invested in these small businesses are being lost or are have already been lost. Hotels and restaurants, our entire tourism and convention industry business, has been shut down. It makes no sense. It makes no sense.”
Goodman’s concerns – that the “cure is worse than the disease – are shared by millions of Americans who fear that we’re doing unnecessary damage to the economy as a result of poorly-planned mitigation strategies. It may be that infection rates can only be tamped down temporarily. Unfortunately, the economic disaster we’re building in the meantime could have ramifications that last a generation.
We won’t suggest that the solution to this quandary is an easy one. We’re just saying that things can’t go on like this for much longer.