April 17, 2020 – Exclusive: Jim Breslo notes how closing of public spaces further disadvantages the poor
By Jim Breslo
It is the progressives’ utopian dream to have total and absolute equality among all people: No rich, no poor. With the coronavirus, progressive governors and mayors across the country have implemented blanket rules that apply to all: Everyone, regardless of wealth, stature, health, age, or risk factors, or whether you live in a dense urban area or remote mountain village, must stay at home unless deemed to have an “essential” job. For these politicians, having it apply to all feels right. But is this real equality? In fact, the shutdown orders by mayors and governors are highly inequitable policies.
As Nancy Pelosi so succinctly demonstrated in her now-infamous designer ice cream demonstration in front of her “twin Sub Z’s,'” quarantine for the wealthy looks nothing like quarantine for the poor. For the wealthy, quarantine means you are restricted to your home, backyard, large-screen TV, pool, etc. For the poor, it means you are restricted to your two-bedroom apartment with no balcony, which you live in with your spouse, three children and two grandparents.
Equal access to public spaces is what allows the poor to enjoy life in a way at least modestly equivalent to the wealthy. But in California, as well as other states, residents are not only confined to their homes, restricted from leaving except for an essential activity, but public spaces, like beaches, trails and parks, are all closed. Some cities, like Santa Monica, have closed bike and walking paths. These closures have a far greater adverse impact on the poor. They rely upon these areas to enjoy the outdoors, exercise, breathe fresh air and be in the sun.
Of note, the politicians implementing these orders most often fall into the category of the wealthy, not the poor. They tend to live in homes with backyards and twin Sub Z’s. Oh, and by the way, government work is deemed essential, so the politicians have not lost their jobs, are receiving full pay and are free to leave their homes to go to work.
Implementing a city or statewide shutdown when it does not really affect you is a lot easier. Perhaps these progressive politicians should demonstrate their true commitment to equality by staying in an overcrowded small apartment during the period of the shutdown they have ordered. They can issue any new orders using Zoom. I have a feeling if they did this, updated orders would be coming a lot sooner than currently projected.