Mailbag: Orange County’s elected leaders can blame themselves for the increase in coronavirus cases

Marcos Escutia, 30 of Costa Mesa, wears a unique face mask at the Newport Pier in Newport Beach on May 7.
(Daily Pilot)

In this jabberwocky world of Orange County politics, where down is up and up is often down, don’t be surprised if our local leaders try to start blaming someone else for the upsurge in coronavirus cases. They will undoubtedly shift the blame for opening the economy too soon.

Why would they do that? Because they can. They can be as illogical and as wrong as they want and still manage to get many of their constituents to believe their upside-down reasoning.

Let’s not forget who was putting pressure on Sacramento to open the economy prematurely, weeks before it actually opened: a council member from Newport Beach and a group of local business leaders.

Who defied the order to close down the beaches while other beach cities in California followed state guidelines? The majority of the members of the Newport Beach Council, along with a handful of other Orange County beach leaders.

Who would not support the decision of the county health officer when she was getting personal threats for making masks mandatory? And when she was replaced, who put pressure on the new health officer to nullify the mandatory orders at the heights of the coronavirus surge?

Who gave in to the demands of the illogical and unscientific declarations of the minority crowd who showed up at the meeting to demand that mask orders be rescinded?

You guessed it: a majority of the Orange County Board of Supervisors.

Most of the local city councils sat idly by and watched the single most important defense that we have against the coronavirus, the face mask, be taken off the table. Once again the governor had to step in to set things straight.

Local governments are in charge of enforcement, and yet there seems to be none in place. That is why people continue to go “maskless” and the numbers are soaring now in Orange County.

Recalcitrant local business and political leaders, who are focusing on the upcoming elections, are taking the truth and reality and twisting it every way they can, trying to gain the advantage. They even complained that the governor overreacted in hustling to get hospitals ready, pointing out that they were almost empty.

Let’s not forget their failure to support science and health leaders and their continuous rebellious nature against those who are working to do the right thing. Let’s not let them get away with it by reminding them that they are doing the wrong thing.

Lynn Lorenz
Newport Beach


If Mike Pence can wear a mask, you can too

Given all the controversy over face coverings, here are 10 things that are easier to do than wearing a COVID-19 mask:

1) holding your breath for eight minutes;
2) sticking your hand in a garbage disposal (when it’s running);
3) driving 100 mph down PCH blindfolded;
4) pushing a 500-pound boulder a mile uphill;
5) babysitting 12-month-old sextuplets;
6) eating 72 hot dogs in 10 minutes;
7) surfing the Wedge on a 30-foot day;
8) walking down Huntington Beach’s Main Street naked;
9) kissing a rattlesnake in the hills above Laguna Beach and
10) drinking Clorox bleach as an antidote to the coronavirus.

C’mon, people. Even the vice president is doing it now. Wear a damn mask!

Denny Freidenrich
Laguna Beach


Rename John Wayne Airport

I disagree with Supervisor Michelle Steel about why we should keep the name of a great actor who may have contributed to certain causes but who was both a member of the John Birch Society and a bigoted racist, as evidenced by his interview in Playboy magazine.

Names of public places and statues are symbols, and those symbols should represent ideals and aspirations, not bigotry. It’s time to move on and call Orange County Airport by its original name.

Mike Natelson


Steel is wrong on airport issue

Over the past year, Supervisor Michelle Steel has put her allegiance to the president and the Republican Party far ahead of those she represents in Orange County. She sided with arch conservatives in wanting to keep the county airport linked with John Wayne, an admitted bigot. Steel should definitely not be representing us in Congress.

Tim Geddes
Huntington Beach

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