Sunday letters: Public’s right to know, and Rob Leavitt

The public needs information

When I was a reporter for my campus newspaper. There were a series of rapes in the dorms. I heard about them from the victims.

I went to the campus police and asked why I wasn’t seeing these rapes in the police blotter that I checked every morning.

“We don’t wanna panic the coeds,” I was told.

“Don’t you think the coeds ought to know if there’s a threat out there so they can take precautions?” was my reply.

It’s the same with the imminent danger of this coronavirus pandemic. President Trump keeps telling us there’ll be a vaccine any day now. Meanwhile, the scientists, the ones who know what they’re talking about, say it’ll take at least a year to develop such a serum.

Trump also assures us only a small percentage of the population has been infected. Tell that to the families who’ve lost loved ones to this disease. Vice President and Minister of Propaganda Mike Pence has been assigned to put a positive spin on the crisis. All information is to be filtered through him.

The only panic Trump is really concerned about is on Wall Street. His 29,000 Dow Jones Industrials is gone. That’s been Trump’s main selling point in his reelection bid. Besides, for people like Trump, money comes before human lives every time.

This entire tragedy got started because its origins were in a society that’s even more closed than ours, Wuhan, China. Dr. Li Wenliang was the first to sound the alarm about the virus in December. He was arrested for spreading rumors. Li Wenliang contracted the disease and died.

Other doctors were prevented by the government from informing even their peers, let alone the general public. The citizens of Wuhan were allowed to leave the city and celebrate Chinese New Year. After that, there was no containing the virus.

Keeping information from the public to avoid a panic is a patronizing and foolish action on the part of government. Trust your citizens to act like rational adults and give them the facts they need to know.

Fred Malo Jr.

Rob Leavitt builds consensus

Basalt needs a Mayor like Rob Leavitt. Rob understands the diversity and vibrancy of our community like no other candidate. He has been deeply engaged in practical solutions around strategic planning, youth empowerment, and resiliency after the Lake Christine wildfire. Rob will help us craft a better future. Rob’s deep history in the midvalley, commitment to rational discourse, and ability to comprehend complex issues will help us build on the past without overbuilding. Rob is one of those modest guys who listens, builds consensus, and leads without being a jerk. With Rob’s leadership, Basalt will be able to say no to sprawl and yes to many things we need including infill housing, youth engagement in government, and a circulator bus. Please join me in placing Rob Leavitt as number one on your Basalt Ballot.

Jon Fox-Rubin

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