Another Depressing Ralph Northam Presser

by Kerry Dougherty

Gov. Ralph Northam’s ability to gaslight Virginia was on display again at his Tuesday press conference.

He indicated that he and his wife had visited schools that had recently reopened and that they were happy to see kids masked up and maintaining social distances from each other.

Maybe the sight of kids in masks warms Northam’s heart. To many of us it’s a sign of heartbreaking overkill.

He indicated that school reopenings were going great thanks to the data that showed schools were a safe place for children during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Unfortunately, that bit of “science” has been known since at least last June. Yet Northam’s original rules for school reopenings were so bizarre and unworkable that many districts just gave up and kept remote learning in place in the fall.

There was more.

Following the Blue State playbook, the governor announced that he wasn’t going to relax his “emergency” restrictions on gatherings and masks, as if those rules were  somehow responsible for the recent sharp decline in cases and hospitalizations.

They aren’t, and Northam knows it.

Cases climbed sharply in January when Northam’s idiotic curfews and alcohol restrictions had been in place for a month. In fact, Virginia followed almost the exact same pattern of a sharp increase in cases followed by a sharp decrease as the states without curfews, shutdowns and mask mandates.

But Northam was at his most disturbing when the subject of parole was broached.

“I’m in favor of parole,” Northam said in his folksy accent. “I believe in second chances.”

That’s nice. But will someone with actual knowledge of the criminal justice system please tell Dr. Northam that most of the criminals eligible for parole have already had second chances. And third chances.

Take Vincent Martin, for instance.

He’s the cop killer who put four rounds into the head of Richmond patrolman Michel P. Connors in 1979 during a traffic stop and whose release from prison last year was met with widespread anger. Especially from the law enforcement community.

Until Virginia’s soft-on-crime parole board freed him last year, Martin was serving a life sentence for the slaying. Because his crime was committed prior to Virginia’s 1995 Truth in Sentencing law, which effectively outlawed parole, Martin came up for a parole hearing periodically.

Previous boards had the good sense to turn him down.

Not this one. Its members have been busily freeing murderers.

A simple sentence in a Richmond Times-Dispatch story on Martin last year summed up everything that was wrong with parole.

“(Adrianne L.) Bennett (former chair of the Virginia Parole Board) said that Martin already has served 40 years in prison and been eligible for parole for the past 26 years.”

Think about that for a moment. Martin, sentenced to LIFE IN PRISON was eligible for parole after 14 years under Virginia’s old revolving door prison system.

Northam and company want to bring that back.

Did Martin deserve a second chance? Actually, Martin got his second chance after his first armed robbery conviction.

He got another chance after his second armed robbery conviction.

By the time he executed Officer Connors, Martin had used up his chances. Until Ralph Northam’s parole board came along, that is.

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18 responses to “Another Depressing Ralph Northam Presser”

  1. energyNOW_Fan Avatar

    Some I know have already opted for full time private schools in the Fall, rather than deal with the uncertainty of teachers union demands. Now is when some privates schools need the commitment.

  2. Dick Hall-Sizemore Avatar
    Dick Hall-Sizemore

    Kelly constantly argues that mask-wearing does not make a difference in protecting one from COVID infection. The “proof” she offers is that Virginia follows the same pattern as states without restrictions on gathering and mask wearing. She never seems to consider that the surge in infections could have been worse without those protective measures in place. There is evidence that masks not only protect one from contracting COVID, but also lessen the effects if COVID is contracted. See: and

    1. This is hands-down my favorite sentence in the PNAS literature review:

      “A recent analysis has found that transmission through talking may be a key vector, with louder speech creating increasing quantities and sizes of particles, and a small fraction of individuals behaving as “speech superemitters,” releasing an order of magnitude more aerosols than their peers.”

    2. Nancy Naive Avatar
      Nancy Naive

      The flu was almost nonexistent this year. Most probably because of the prophylactic measures against COVID. Gives some idea of effectiveness.

      1. Stephen Haner Avatar
        Stephen Haner

        A particular virulent flu has killed 500K. Gives me all I need to know about the effectiveness. The main reason earlier flus are less prevalent is the schools are closed, and the kids have been the carriers there in the past. Now, maybe in a future flu season getting kids to mask up might fly.

        1. Nancy Naive Avatar
          Nancy Naive

          You do realize that the flu virus and the corona virus are different, right? It’s only called a flu so that racists can rhyme it with Wu.

          1. Isn’t that also why a person from UVA is called a Wahoo?


          2. Nancy Naive Avatar
            Nancy Naive

            Based on the smell test, Menhaden would have been a better choice.

    3. Stephen Haner Avatar
      Stephen Haner

      We all know plenty of people who got sick and said, “but I had my mask!” The benefits are overblown. Too many doing it wrong. But it’s easy and I’m fine with it. New data out of Israel that those who have been vaccinated are also protected (94%) against even an asymptomatic infection. That was Pfizer. So once vaccinated, you ain’t spreading this thing and masking up is just for show.

      As the world closed down this week in March ’20, we made a last venture out to drink beer at a brewery, sitting in the sun on the deck. Going back today to celebrate the light at the end of the tunnel. Got my plane tickets for Texas!

      1. Nancy Naive Avatar
        Nancy Naive

        Still gotta wash your hands before picking your nose, mask or no.

        Enjoy Texas. This reopening is just easier than passing and then defending voter suppression laws.

        1. Stephen Haner Avatar
          Stephen Haner

          You gotta love the Left. They ask for a one-time change in rules for the pandemic (45 days of early voting, no absentee witness) and then any attempt to return to standard practice is !voter suppression!!

        2. What about after?

          1. Nancy Naive Avatar
            Nancy Naive

            That’s why you wear socks.

  3. You can always do what I do (or more accurately, don’t do) – I don’t watch Ralph Northam’s press conferences.

  4. Stephen Haner Avatar
    Stephen Haner

    What I noted from the discussion was Northam saying no real relaxation was possible without “herd immunity.” There may never be herd immunity, so I guess we are under emergency controls for the rest of our lives (or until we get a less power-mad governor or president.) Too many people are refusing the vaccine, whole lot of them Republicans (hey, idiots, Trump DID quietly get the shots so you can too), and then there are the variants. The billions of people around the world won’t be up on the vaccines for a long time if ever. Pockets of this disease will be around. This particular SARS strain is going to be with us from here on — well controlled, with new treatments on the way, but not gone.

    I was in a doc’s office a week ago Monday, routine, and the lady who checked me in (temp, O2) said she wasn’t going to get the shot. Just came up in casual conversation…and she’s the one person in the practice face to face with every patient!! Not sure if she was actually a nurse, but my daughter has mentioned some of those shying away.

    Lenient parole. Do not think for one second that this position was taken lightly, without polling to test it. It is a big pendulum, swinging left until the crime situation gets out of hand. It will happen and reverse. It is already happening (boy was that fast) at the southern border.

    1. vicnicholls Avatar

      “Idiots”? What happened to the conservative/Republican respect for individuals?

    2. vicnicholls Avatar

      “Idiots”? What happened to the conservative/Republican respect for individuals?

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