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Letters to the Editor: Orange County’s COVID fatigue only prolongs the pandemic

Demonstrators on an Orange County sidewalk carry signs including: "No mask will ever silence us!"
Demonstrators protest in Huntington Beach on April 26 against COVID-19 restrictions.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: It was dismaying but not surprising to read that Orange County leaders are pushing back against the state’s new COVID-19 restrictions. Our leaders have shown consistently poor judgment in prioritizing what they believe to be good for business at the expense of human life.

We know from other countries, like New Zealand, that places where the virus was hit early and hard with sometimes onerous restrictions have not only dramatically lowered death rates, but also have economies that have been able to return to something closer to normal than here.

My elected supervisor, Lisa Bartlett, was quoted as saying that Orange County has proved that we’ve been able to reopen safely. Every day I consult our death rate and compare it with those of comparable counties like San Diego and Santa Clara.

As of my most recent check, our death rate is about 48 per 100,000; San Diego County’s is about 28; and Santa Clara County’s is around 23. This is not a record to boast about.

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Glenna Matthews, Laguna Beach

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To the editor: Gov. Gavin Newsom’s decision to move Orange County to the state’s highest-risk tier of COVID-19 danger is based on increases in disease rates. He is trying to save lives.

It is Supervisor Michelle Steel who is playing politics and disregarding the health and economy of Orange County by prioritizing politics over common sense and scientifically sound public health policy.

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Supervisor Don Wagner complains about more clampdowns with no end in sight. Hasn’t he heard that two experimental vaccines have reported positive results in late-stage trials and may be approved on an emergency basis in a few weeks? That certainly doesn’t seem like a situation with no end in sight.

We can save hundreds of thousands of lives in America and hundreds or thousands in Orange County by following the guidance of public health experts.

David Bendall, Aliso Viejo

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To the editor: It is highly ironic to see Orange County residents “demanding” an end to COVID-19 restrictions. They won’t want to hear this, and they won’t accept it, but they have only themselves to blame.

They are quick to blame the governor or the state Health Department, but Orange County has a record of non-compliance and refusal to follow protocols dating back to the beginning of this pandemic. This refusal, and that of non-believers all over our country, to comply with guidelines has contributed to the crisis we are experiencing.

If these people had stopped complaining and started complying eight months ago, our situation could have been much different today.

Terry Walker, Sylmar


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