Ralph “No Hope” Northam

Eighty degrees and empty. Photo by Kerry Dougherty.

by Kerry Dougherty

Gird your loins, Virginia.

While some governors are preparing to gradually reopen their state economies with social distancing and restrictions, noncommittal Ralph Northam seems ready to stretch this misery out for months.

Long after COVID-19 is forecast to be inactive.

Last night, during a virtual town hall, Northam once again deflated expectations that his stay-at-home order — as it affects coastal Virginia, anyway — might be revoked before June 10.

Question: Is it reasonable to expect large events this summer?

Gov. Ralph Northam: I would like to say by July the virus will be in our rear view mirror, but I wouldn’t recommend summer events right now such as festivals and beaches opening.

He wouldn’t recommend summer events such as beaches being open by July?

Is he insane?

The IHME model, which the White House and governors gobbled up earlier in this season of Pandemonia, now predicts that Virginia will reach its peak infections on April 23.

For those who’ve lost track of time, that’s tomorrow.

The model shows a short plateau and then a steady drop in hospitalizations and deaths, tapering off to almost nothing by the end of May.

So why in the world would summer events be cancelled in JULY? Why would beaches remain closed?

I know, I know, models change day by day. And the only thing they seem to have in common is a habit of being wrong. Still, they’re all we have to work with.

The governor said that more testing was needed before Virginia could reopen, but he was vague about how he planned to get that done. Northam’s lagged well behind other governors in securing kits, almost as if he were in no hurry to jump start the commonwealth.

Lest anyone think all I care about is sprawling on the beach, this is not about my tan lines.

It’s the economy, stupid.

Virginia Beach is nicknamed the Resort City for a reason. Its lifeblood is tourism. With beaches closed, tourism is dead. That means empty hotels, restaurants, city coffers and a surge in unemployment, followed by reduced city services and deep cuts to the school budget.

The gruesome effects of Northam’s shutdown will be felt in these parts for years.

I don’t want to drown you in numbers, but in 2017, Virginia Beach hosted 19 million visitors. International tourists accounted for about 408,000 of them. That meant about $2.45 billion in direct spending on travel-related activities.
International visitors are off the table this year. But so are ALL tourists if the governor stubbornly keeps the beaches closed.

From the city’s website:

On a regional level, tourism-supported jobs totaled 48,020 ($1.07 billion in salaries) while local and state tourism-related taxes derived from activity in Virginia Beach were $419.9 million.

On a state level, spending by domestic travelers to Virginia in 2017 equaled $68 million a day. Overall travel expenditures increased 4.4 percent to $24.8 billion. As the fifth largest private employer in Virginia, the travel and tourism industry supported more than 232,000 jobs and $5.9 billion in payroll.

Virginia Beach already missed out on big money-making weekends: The Shamrock Marathon in March, Something In The Water Festival this weekend and Memorial Day’s Patriotic Festival.

Now it sounds as if Northam is ready to kill the Fourth of July, too. This, despite a lack of evidence that the COVID-19 virus spreads easily outside. In fact, if there’s one thing virologists seem to agree on, it’s that the virus spreads more easily indoors and on crowded public transportation.

If the governor keeps the beaches closed beyond June 10, it will be catastrophic.

He simply has to stop moving the goalposts.

On March 13th we were told we needed to shut down Virginia for “15 days to slow the spread.”

The purpose was to slow the infection so that hospitals would not be overrun when we became sick.

Mission accomplished.

Not only have most Virginia hospitals not been inundated with patients, but some are laying off staff due to the cancellation of elective procedures. More than 30,000 Virginia healthcare workers have lost their jobs during the pandemic.

On March 23, Northam cancelled schools for the academic year. Then, on March 30 he issued his extreme stay-at-home order until June 10.
Now he’s hinting that Virginia Beach will be closed through part of the summer.

Unacceptable.

There are responsible ways to reopen the economy while incorporating social distancing. Restaurants can reduce the number of tables and shops can limit the number of customers and require masks.

Shoot, in conjunction with reopening the beaches, Virginia Beach could hold a citywide “Keep Your Distance” poster contest for kids who are home pretending to study while their work is not being graded.

The winning sign could be plastered all along the Boardwalk to remind beachgoers to give each other some space.

No one will be forced to venture out in public if they don’t feel comfortable even after the hospitalizations and deaths decline.

But the shutdown has to end. And Virginia needs to start planning for it.

This column was published originally on www.kerrydougherty.com


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Comments

60 responses to “Ralph “No Hope” Northam”

  1. ksmith8953 Avatar
    ksmith8953

    Amen to that Kerry Dougherty

  2. Steve Haner Avatar
    Steve Haner

    Germany, which has dealt with this much better than the U.S. has (“I was just following orders”), has cancelled Octoberfest. Even by October, large drunken crowds sitting in a beer hall singing Horst Wessel songs sounds unwise. So yeah, the beach festivals may be dead for the year, like the Olympics. What I want is a haircut! Just let me get a haircut and back into my gym, Guv, and all is forgiven…:)

  3. Very poor leadership, definitely not by the #’s or by any stretch of the imagination does he and those advising him know what he is doing and obviously don’t care.

  4. Nancy_Naive Avatar
    Nancy_Naive

    “Gird your loins, Virginia.” for another sandy rant about the beach closure.

  5. Nancy_Naive Avatar
    Nancy_Naive

    First PGA tournament play? June 11, without gallery… so is June 10 that unreasonable? I mean it’s the PGA, not some idiot government!

  6. LarrytheG Avatar
    LarrytheG

    I predict that a passel of different sports will each offer their version of “remote spectator” – i.e. only actual players will be there at the event itself.

    And I further predict that the sports teams and broadcasters will monetize it to the maximum extent they can… doing their part to goose the economy back…. or some such.

  7. TooManyTaxes Avatar
    TooManyTaxes

    Re School Closings. Fairfax County Public Schools, with its legion of high-paid, non-teaching employees, properly closed schools on March 13. It planned to offer online distance learning beginning April 14, with support for those without high-speed Internet access and devices. I know Cox is offering free Internet to qualified low-income students. Below from Cox’s website

    Free Connect2Compete service until July 15, 2020, $9.95/month thereafter
    Free phone and remote desktop support through Cox Complete Care until July 15, 2020 to provide peace of mind and ease for technology needs
    Resources for discounted, refurbished equipment through our association with PCs for People
    A Learn from Home toolkit for schools, including instructions on how to fast-track eligible students without internet access.

    This is pretty darn good support from a private company.

    So the bureaucracy had a full month to prepare. April 14 comes and virtually nothing works. Part of the problem was kids and non-students could log in and post stupid pictures and memes. To be expected that kids misbehave.

    Bigger problems – FCPS failed to update its Blackboard software for three years. Blackboard crashed. And FCPS failed to account for expected demand during this month.

    This is an organization that gets $3 billion each year, most all from taxpayers (71% plus local & 23% plus state – a huge proportion coming from Fairfax County). Where is the accountability? What does the state department of education have to say? Will it investigate what I’d classify as gross negligence for not updating software for three years?

  8. LarrytheG Avatar
    LarrytheG

    WaPo had a pretty critical article. I thought they loved liberal groups like the Fairfax teachers and would never criticize them but protect them?

    The reason I asked about success stories is that so far, I’ve not see any schools shown to have completed the transition successfully and moving forward.

    The problem with low-income students is not the computers and internet – it’s that they typically need extra teaching resources like Title teachers and as far as I know, there is no distance learning equivalent but I’m quite sure they are working on it.

    There are groups out there that have experience on this – home schoolers and I believe Liberty University has a distance learning K-12 program.

    So how about it, can you find a school system that is having success ?

  9. ksmith8953 Avatar
    ksmith8953

    Amen to that Kerry Dougherty

  10. Steve Haner Avatar
    Steve Haner

    Germany, which has dealt with this much better than the U.S. has (“I was just following orders”), has cancelled Octoberfest. Even by October, large drunken crowds sitting in a beer hall singing Horst Wessel songs sounds unwise. So yeah, the beach festivals may be dead for the year, like the Olympics. What I want is a haircut! Just let me get a haircut and back into my gym, Guv, and all is forgiven…:)

    1. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      Might want to check out Georgia! πŸ˜‰

  11. Very poor leadership, definitely not by the #’s or by any stretch of the imagination does he and those advising him know what he is doing and obviously don’t care.

  12. djrippert Avatar
    djrippert

    Now that there is talk of allowing states to declare bankruptcy so the states can renegotiate things like employee pensions we’ll see whether the liberals’ support for an endless lockdown continues.

    Private sector retirees are seeing their 40(k)s devastated. It seems only fair that government retirees take a good old fashioned haircut to their benefits as well.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/mcconnell-says-he-favors-allowing-states-to-declare-bankruptcy/ar-BB1336bq

  13. Nancy_Naive Avatar
    Nancy_Naive

    “Gird your loins, Virginia.” for another sandy rant about the beach closure.

  14. Nancy_Naive Avatar
    Nancy_Naive

    First PGA tournament play? June 11, without gallery… so is June 10 that unreasonable? I mean it’s the PGA, not some idiot government!

  15. LarrytheG Avatar
    LarrytheG

    I predict that a passel of different sports will each offer their version of “remote spectator” – i.e. only actual players will be there at the event itself.

    And I further predict that the sports teams and broadcasters will monetize it to the maximum extent they can… doing their part to goose the economy back…. or some such.

  16. TooManyTaxes Avatar
    TooManyTaxes

    Re School Closings. Fairfax County Public Schools, with its legion of high-paid, non-teaching employees, properly closed schools on March 13. It planned to offer online distance learning beginning April 14, with support for those without high-speed Internet access and devices. I know Cox is offering free Internet to qualified low-income students. Below from Cox’s website

    Free Connect2Compete service until July 15, 2020, $9.95/month thereafter
    Free phone and remote desktop support through Cox Complete Care until July 15, 2020 to provide peace of mind and ease for technology needs
    Resources for discounted, refurbished equipment through our association with PCs for People
    A Learn from Home toolkit for schools, including instructions on how to fast-track eligible students without internet access.

    This is pretty darn good support from a private company.

    So the bureaucracy had a full month to prepare. April 14 comes and virtually nothing works. Part of the problem was kids and non-students could log in and post stupid pictures and memes. To be expected that kids misbehave.

    Bigger problems – FCPS failed to update its Blackboard software for three years. Blackboard crashed. And FCPS failed to account for expected demand during this month.

    This is an organization that gets $3 billion each year, most all from taxpayers (71% plus local & 23% plus state – a huge proportion coming from Fairfax County). Where is the accountability? What does the state department of education have to say? Will it investigate what I’d classify as gross negligence for not updating software for three years?

    1. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      Yep Fairfax did “eff” up!

      Where did you get that info TMT – WaPo?

      But I AM curious if there are ANY school systems in Virginia that has got the remote learning stuff under control?

      success stories? Might be a good BR article if they can get off the “we are not happy” kick and go see if any of those nasty msm newspapers have published any articles on it!

      1. TooManyTaxes Avatar
        TooManyTaxes

        I have not read anything about the screwup from the Post. Used radio/tv websites, the FCPS homepage and a number of parent postings on a number of platforms.

        And “yes,” it would be good to learn about some school systems that have gotten distance learning off the ground. Learning what works is important.

        I’m not exasperated by some failures in the FCPS launch of distance learning but: 1) what did they do for a month? and 2) not updating software for three years is gross negligence in today’s world of hackers, ransomware and computer viruses.

        My biggest complaint about state and local government is that it’s trying to do big and vague things, such as address climate change and engage in social engineering, when it cannot do the basics. Start up distance learning on an existing platform that it’s been using, for example. With a combination of assistance from communications companies and a working distance learning platform, FCPS could do more for low-income students than its does with all the social justice posturing.

        1. matthurt92 Avatar
          matthurt92

          Google Classroom is a free resource to facilitate distance learning, it does not require maintenance, and it works!

          1. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            There are a number on online K-12 products including Virginia’s virtual learning offering.

            For all the hate and vinegar towards public education, this is THE time for people to take control of their own kids education!

            Rather than condemn the failings of public education to transition to distance learning – take responsibility yourself – and who knows, on the back side of this, public education may find itself having to make big changes if they want to get people back.

            Too many play the half-glass-empty game. Change brings opportunity. Do it!

        2. djrippert Avatar
          djrippert

          “My biggest complaint about state and local government is that it’s trying to do big and vague things, such as address climate change and engage in social engineering, when it cannot do the basics.”

          Amen to that.

        3. SWVAgirl Avatar

          re: school system that has gotten distance learning off the ground
          Our youngest son is in high school in Montgomery County (Virginia, not Maryland). MCPS uses Google Classroom. For about the last 4-5 years, they also have been issuing a Chromebook to each high and middle school (about 70% of our county budget goes to the school system). Elementary school students have an individual Chromebook as well, but those students’ Chromebooks stay at the school while high / middle students take theirs to and from school & home. I was working as a substitute teacher at a few different MCPS schools the last week before the shutdown. Even without any official word, they were preparing for the possibility of school closure. The elementary schools issued Chromebooks to their 3rd-5th graders. All students were polled on their home internet access. When the word came that school would be closed for 2 weeks (after 2:00 on Friday afternoon), MCPS held the buses 30 minutes to give students extra time to gather items they might need for at-home learning.
          Official distance learning began the last week of March. ( I say “official” because my son had his previously assigned work already available to him on Google classroom to work on the very first week of the school shutdown. ) Students who did not have adequate internet had their assignments loaded directly onto their Chromebooks (Chromebooks could be dropped off & picked up by school bus). I think they later decided to mail flash drives to students without internet. Since we have internet, I don’t know how those students submit assignments. Students in grades K-2 received packets of assignments in the mail. Again, since I don’t have children this age, I don’t know how this works. High school students, I do know, receive assignments in 2-week blocks. My son’s complaint the first week was that at least one of his teachers gave more work virtually than in person. This is new to them all. His teachers are recording video lessons. Some are holding Zoom sessions for questions, especially math teachers.

          In response to an email I sent, my son’s principal told me the state superintendent recommended no new instruction after March 13.

          Not related to instruction per se, Montgomery County is also delivering breakfast & lunch to students, regardless of income status. The school buses are also picking up / delivering library books.

          1. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            Thank You SWVAgirl. I was sorta waiting for your critique , good bad, ugly.

            And yes… there are methods to pre-load the chromebooks with the lessons for kids who do not have internet.

            They do have to be taken back to the school or have a bus – refresh them.

            So do you feel your son is getting a good education this way?

            How about the socialization… the school sports, the extracurricular activities, the “clubs”, the labs?

          2. Great story! Sounds like at least one school district has its act together. I’ll be interested to read your impressions a month from now.

          3. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            Jim – you could do more stories like this – instead of attacking everything! Geeze!

            One thing to note about this story is that Montgomery County Va is Virginia Tech country.

            I suspect the schools system either has onboard or has access to some high quality tech folks.

          4. Reed Fawell 3rd Avatar
            Reed Fawell 3rd

            This is result when you escape the fanged maw of Virginia’s ruling educational progressive elite.

          5. SWVAgirl Avatar

            Jim – I’ll try to remember.

            Larry – I believe he’s getting an education quite similar to the one he was receiving before. We’ve been in the school long enough for me to know that he has 3 good teachers for his core classes this semester (+ another on Virtual Virginia), so that helps a great deal. There may be some silver linings; since there is no SOL this spring, his Biology teacher says she has more opportunity to teach some things that she ordinarily doesn’t have time to. She said she’s working on their last unit–2 weeks from now–to be about COVID 19.

            To your other questions…socialization, labs, clubs, sports… Due to the stay-at-home order, socialization is primarily via phone or computer. One teacher has given assignments which can be completed in groups. There may have been a virtual biology lab; I know there have been interactive activities. My son pretty much only comes to me when he finds something really interesting or needs my help, so I can’t speak to everything. No clubs. Well, maybe, now that I think of it. I saw a student looking to start a virtual sign language club, but I don’t know any specifics. The VHSL shut down the spring sports season the same week Northam closed school for the remainder of the year. We are very grateful our son took welding in the fall semester rather than the spring as that is a class that would not lend itself to e-learning (and, after he borrowed grandpa’s welder, our son is spending some of his free time welding in the garage).

            In full disclosure, we are former homeschoolers so this transition is probably easier for us than some families.

            In reference to Virginia Tech, I don’t know of any direct connection between VT and MCPS technology department. Pulaski County, next door to Montgomery, took off March 13 in order to prepare for a possible shutdown.

          6. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            SWVA gal. Thank you. Your experience is valuable to those who are trying to understand an issue but do not have personal experience in it.

            The fact that you used to home-school (is that past tense?) then starting going to public school is not unique but a lot of folks don’t know the why or wherefores or the impacts and you do.

            So why did you move to public school – what were the reasons?

            What were the good things and what were not?

            When you did homeschooling – were you concerned about SOLs or not?

            Were you able to find non-public-school resources that well provided for the academics?

            Is there a wide variety of available software or just a limited selection?

            Does any of the online actually provide a real teacher or is it all computer software?

            Does the software “tutor”? In other words, if the student has a problem with something, does the software detect that and push more help on that part?

            Does the software provide tests and automatically grades?

            Is there some kind of certification that is accepted as the equivalent of a public school diploma?

            I’ll stop there – probably way too many questions but I’ve not really seen answers to them here in this forum and some of them have been discussed and at issue.

            thanks much… if this is too much … just beg off… and thank you for whatever time you choose to devote to answers!

          7. SWVAgirl Avatar

            Larry – Whoa. I can’t adequately answer all your questions today.
            Here are some short answers:

            When our oldest son was Kindergarten age, my husband worked an odd shift. With traditional school, he and our son would catch a glimpse of each other a couple times a week. Homeschooling allowed us more family time. I also had not heard great things about the local elementary school. I’ll mention here too that I had been extremely bored in school, and I hadn’t seen anything that lead me to believe our son wouldn’t be bored as well. I was a compliant little girl; he was a rowdy little boy, and I saw trouble on the horizon. It was Kindergarten, after all, I thought we could handle it. And we did, and just kept going with it.

            Good things: Perhaps the best is that we have developed close relationships as family members. Being able to let the boys run around with dad on his days off and have school when he was at work.
            Skiing and swimming during off-peak hours. Homeschool Days at Colonial Williamsburg. 2 of the 3 boys also have learning disabilities that the school system was not going to address (I know because we tried–this is a long story in itself. ) While homeschooling, we were able to search out the people and materials to them deal with their challenges.
            Not: A messy house. Having my children with me 24-7-365. I got tired sometimes, but so worth it in the rearview.

            Never gave the SOLs a passing thought. When the boys did take SOLs in public school, they were / are no big deal. Middle son would’ve been valedictorian of his class had they not done away with those distinctions.

            To your next group of questions: Yes. Everything you asked about exists. People who homeschool can find as much or as little to help them as they want and as they wish to pay for. There are so many resources to choose from it can be overwhelming. Homeschoolers run the spectrum from those who want to pick and choose individual books and develop their own curriculum to those who enroll their children in virtual academies, not to mention local co-ops and classes. It is truly not a one-size fits all group. There are diploma-awarding programs; I also know many parents who give their own diplomas. From my friends who sent their homeschool graduates to college, colleges don’t seem to care about the diploma as much as the transcript. Record keeping is important.

            I said “former” homeschool family as our last remaining school-age is in public school. I figured it was the most honest description, though I still feel like a homeschooler at heart, as cheesy as that may sound. When our family learned Dual Enrollment classes were available at the high school, that was a big part of the decision to send them. I knew we’d be looking for someone else to teach some subjects (calculus comes to mind). The boys were excited about continuing to play sports; community sports largely dry up around here by the end of middle school.

            Certainly not an exhaustive answer to everything you asked, but perhaps I answered a few questions.

          8. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            SWVAgirl – that was SUPER EXCELLENT! Thank you!

            please continue to add your thoughts and experiences – I’m sure I’m not the only one listening to you.

            And noted – the dual-enrollment… incentive…

            On a dollar-cost basis – was it costly?

            For Calculus – online not good?

  17. LarrytheG Avatar
    LarrytheG

    WaPo had a pretty critical article. I thought they loved liberal groups like the Fairfax teachers and would never criticize them but protect them?

    The reason I asked about success stories is that so far, I’ve not see any schools shown to have completed the transition successfully and moving forward.

    The problem with low-income students is not the computers and internet – it’s that they typically need extra teaching resources like Title teachers and as far as I know, there is no distance learning equivalent but I’m quite sure they are working on it.

    There are groups out there that have experience on this – home schoolers and I believe Liberty University has a distance learning K-12 program.

    So how about it, can you find a school system that is having success ?

    1. James Wyatt Whitehead V Avatar
      James Wyatt Whitehead V

      Randolph Macon Academy missed 2 days of school to transition to the virtual classroom. They had everything in place, teachers trained, kids knew what to do, and grades do indeed count. I believe the logistics of a smaller group of people helped as well.
      https://www.rma.edu/

      1. LarrytheG Avatar
        LarrytheG

        If you believe what they are saying, they have made a seamless transition and others should be able to follow.

        So a question. if a place like Randolph Macon has mastered distance learning – what keeps a lot of other parents from just signing on to that school instead of waiting for their own schools to putz around?

        Isn’t this an opportunity for the schools that get this done right?

        1. James Wyatt Whitehead V Avatar
          James Wyatt Whitehead V

          I believe the folks up at Randolph Macon have done notably well. However the virtual classroom cannot top the experience of well run brick and mortar school house. I do see an opportunity for schools that have demonstrated success. Maybe parents and kids will seek out the alternatives if they can write the check. Randolph Macon has had their toe in the virtual classroom water for a couple of years so going full time was not full of pitfalls, behavior issues, and software syntax errors.

          1. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            I agree about the bricks/mortar but it’s just not an option right now and we have to maximize what we can with online until we can get to a better place.

            The biggest problem that we have right now is mixed messages about the severity of the problem. People openly disbelieve it and think we can fix it by just going back. So, too many are waiting and not doing much if anything.

            We’re all wishing, hoping, believing that this is going to blow over and the bricks/mortar schools are going to open come fall – despite the fact we have some pretty stark warnings otherwise.

            Whatever we do about online/distance learning will not be wasted – in fact, it could revolutionize learning and take us to a different public education world downstream.

            Just imagine, any kid, anywhere in Virginia, could take ANY course that used to be available only to high dollar school districts, even private schools.

      2. Reed Fawell 3rd Avatar
        Reed Fawell 3rd

        PI would be a privilege to receive periodic updates on coping from SWVAgirl on Montgomery County, Va, schools, and from James and others on RMA too.|

        PS. I am graduate of RMA.

        1. LarrytheG Avatar
          LarrytheG

          I’d like to see regional correspondents from around Virginia on BR – not right wing zealots – just ordinary folk.

        2. James Wyatt Whitehead V Avatar
          James Wyatt Whitehead V

          The Yellow Jackets have a good defensive line for football next year. You should come back for the Homecoming game. Nothing finer than being up on “The Hill” in October.

  18. djrippert Avatar
    djrippert

    Now that there is talk of allowing states to declare bankruptcy so the states can renegotiate things like employee pensions we’ll see whether the liberals’ support for an endless lockdown continues.

    Private sector retirees are seeing their 40(k)s devastated. It seems only fair that government retirees take a good old fashioned haircut to their benefits as well.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/mcconnell-says-he-favors-allowing-states-to-declare-bankruptcy/ar-BB1336bq

    1. James Wyatt Whitehead V Avatar
      James Wyatt Whitehead V

      I just hope the haircut doesn’t come with a shave and a manicure. I fully expect a significant trim on the VRS benefits. More witch hazel for my bald spot!

    2. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      more goofiness from wackadoodles… The Feds have traditionally and typically picked up pensions during bankruptcies all along.

      Of course the PBGC could go broke… but heckfire if we’re spending money hand over fist on everything from airlines to chain restaurants, what the heck.

    3. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      Of course, most of the folks up where DJ lives have Federal pensions.

  19. Aside from beaches there are many July 4 celebrations and many concerts in the parks this summer. Those of us in community music groups (with Age 65+ members) do not know when we can ever safely reconvene to rehearse, most are thinking *maybe* Fall. But the Towns and Counties have not yet cancelled those activities, which puts us groups in the awkward position having to cancel out, because we do not have a crystal ball to commit now to say we can be there…in fact we probably cannot do it, due to high risk people having to opt out, until when? a vaccine is developed maybe 2-yrs hence?

  20. Aside from beaches there are many July 4 celebrations and many concerts in the parks this summer. Those of us in community music groups (with Age 65+ members) do not know when we can ever safely reconvene to rehearse, most are thinking *maybe* Fall. But the Towns and Counties have not yet cancelled those activities, which puts us groups in the awkward position having to cancel out, because we do not have a crystal ball to commit now to say we can be there…in fact we probably cannot do it, due to high risk people having to opt out, until when? a vaccine is developed maybe 2-yrs hence?

  21. Peter Galuszka Avatar
    Peter Galuszka

    Jim Bacon,
    I fail to see why you think these Dougherty columns add much to the blog. They are simplistic and parochial and do not deal with the problems that face all of Virginia. Why should I care that some affluent people in Virginia Beach are inconvenienced by the necessary steps regarding the pandemic? I sort of know Virginia Beach having worked for a couple of years in the VB bureau of The Virginian-Pilot. What Daugherty writes is of little consequence to the rest of the state (this being a state-wide blog if I recall). Personally, if I want to go to a beach, something a really like, it would be to the Outer Banks. I am not fond of Virginia Beach except perhaps Sandbridge and Back Bay. OBX is calling and they have rightly called for restrictions. Maybe it is my inner Tar Heel coming out.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      yeah… I’m thinking Kerry is really angling for a GoFundMe for her to head south to the open beaches… πŸ˜‰ It sure would be a little quieter.

  22. Peter Galuszka Avatar
    Peter Galuszka

    Jim Bacon,
    I fail to see why you think these Dougherty columns add much to the blog. They are simplistic and parochial and do not deal with the problems that face all of Virginia. Why should I care that some affluent people in Virginia Beach are inconvenienced by the necessary steps regarding the pandemic? I sort of know Virginia Beach having worked for a couple of years in the VB bureau of The Virginian-Pilot. What Daugherty writes is of little consequence to the rest of the state (this being a state-wide blog if I recall). Personally, if I want to go to a beach, something a really like, it would be to the Outer Banks. I am not fond of Virginia Beach except perhaps Sandbridge and Back Bay. OBX is calling and they have rightly called for restrictions. Maybe it is my inner Tar Heel coming out.

  23. LarrytheG Avatar
    LarrytheG

    Part of the problem has been the narrative that there will be a “peak” and then it will go away. So everyone was looking at the “peak” and thinking in terms of how many weeks it would take to go to zero then we could all go back to what we were doing.

    It took a while for that to be recognized as not true and when it finally began to sink it, a whole bunch of people were not having it.

    It was “unacceptable” as if they could pronounce it so and it would be, then they tried to blame it on people and govt who were doing it on purpose.. almost like stages of grief…

    Now, the CDC – until he gets fired – has warned that it’s not only not going away but it may actually get worse come fall.

    So what to do? well, the blamers need to stop.. like a bunch of little brats who don’t like what’s happened.

    There is just no way for an orchestra or choir to be next to each other much less an audience – for awhile. It’s sad but a reality. Perhaps we all took for granted the simple pleasure of “congregating” for granted.

    Our hope – that there will be a vaccine – is a hope. We should pray that it will happen, right?

  24. LarrytheG Avatar
    LarrytheG

    Part of the problem has been the narrative that there will be a “peak” and then it will go away. So everyone was looking at the “peak” and thinking in terms of how many weeks it would take to go to zero then we could all go back to what we were doing.

    It took a while for that to be recognized as not true and when it finally began to sink it, a whole bunch of people were not having it.

    It was “unacceptable” as if they could pronounce it so and it would be, then they tried to blame it on people and govt who were doing it on purpose.. almost like stages of grief…

    Now, the CDC – until he gets fired – has warned that it’s not only not going away but it may actually get worse come fall.

    So what to do? well, the blamers need to stop.. like a bunch of little brats who don’t like what’s happened.

    There is just no way for an orchestra or choir to be next to each other much less an audience – for awhile. It’s sad but a reality. Perhaps we all took for granted the simple pleasure of “congregating” for granted.

    Our hope – that there will be a vaccine – is a hope. We should pray that it will happen, right?

  25. CrazyJD Avatar

    Kerry has it right. Unfortunately, MSM seems to be perpetrating the continuing narrative, “Be afraid. Be very afraid.” It suits their purpose. “The virus is mutating”, says the New York Times breathlessly.

    Don’t be afraid, be sensible. Maybe you don’t want to be in a Munich beer hall in October, but you certainly can practice social distancing on the beach. Even within six feet on the beach, the ever present wind, onshore or offshore, will keep the virus away. https://www.youtube.com\watch?v=rMWdPRhu_p8

    There is increasing evidence that keeping people locked up at home does more damage than being outside, although you probably don’t want to sit outside in someone’s lap who has Covid-19. It’s called personal JUDGMENT. Those who want the government to interfere don’t believe in it; they want the government to decide, using its judgment that one answer fits all.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      @Crazy – where do people typically go before or after they have been to the beach?

      restrooms? bars? hotels? restaurants?

      that okay?

  26. CrazyJD Avatar

    Kerry has it right. Unfortunately, MSM seems to be perpetrating the continuing narrative, “Be afraid. Be very afraid.” It suits their purpose. “The virus is mutating”, says the New York Times breathlessly.

    Don’t be afraid, be sensible. Maybe you don’t want to be in a Munich beer hall in October, but you certainly can practice social distancing on the beach. Even within six feet on the beach, the ever present wind, onshore or offshore, will keep the virus away. https://www.youtube.comwatch?v=rMWdPRhu_p8

    There is increasing evidence that keeping people locked up at home does more damage than being outside, although you probably don’t want to sit outside in someone’s lap who has Covid-19. It’s called personal JUDGMENT. Those who want the government to interfere don’t believe in it; they want the government to decide, using its judgment that one answer fits all.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      @Crazy – where do people typically go before or after they have been to the beach?

      restrooms? bars? hotels? restaurants?

      that okay?

  27. CrazyJD Avatar

    Though I know those on the left will dismiss her as a right-wingnut, take a look at OAN’s Liz Wheeler’s recitation of facts in support of opening up. 1:45 minutes

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PVR1V_twFEU&t=30s

    Now try to find that video just using Google.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      I can’t believe you watch this stuff. She’s on a site that promotes conspiracy theories. She’s making assertions that she claims are true… without backing them up…. she just says “and they do”… and she is cherry picking and ignoring other data.

      why do you watch this stuff?

  28. Peter Galuszka Avatar
    Peter Galuszka

    And why do we have to accept oan, a far right outlet, as acceptable? Insults our intelligence.

    1. (A) Your comment dodges the substance of what the OAN pundit offered. Oldest trick in the book — denigrate the source of the material and then ignore it without ever addressing the substance.

      (B) By your logic, we should automatically discuss anything coming out of MSNBC, a “far left” media outlet.

      1. LarrytheG Avatar
        LarrytheG

        there’s a problem with a narrative that says a series of true things then claims it means a true thing.

        I do not trust anything from a site that promotes conspiracy theories.

        You guys may claim there is bias in the MSM – and I agree but they do not promote outright lies and sites that do – you do not trust – they’re just spouting garbage.

        Is this is what is going to happen when newspapers shrink ? that you guys will then glom on to sites like this one for your facts?

        There are right-leaning sites and even far-right sites that do NOT promote conspiracy theories. Those sites are no worse than MSNBC – you just keep in mind the bias.

        When you guys glom on to sites that promote conspiracy theories – that’s NOT the same as journalistic “bias” – which we have always had – WapO, NYT, WSJ, NPR, all have bias… but they do not do conspiracy theories.

  29. Peter Galuszka Avatar
    Peter Galuszka

    And why do we have to accept oan, a far right outlet, as acceptable? Insults our intelligence.

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