The science is settled and it's time to end the debate on school closures. Open them in the fall.
The lengths to which the left will go in their refusal to open schools was illustrated in spades after Thursday's White House press briefing.
Trump administration spokeswoman Kayleigh McEnany carefully explained that science favors re-opening schools.
"The science should not stand in the way of this," she began. "And as [Sanford University Hoover Institution senior fellow and former chief of neurology at Stanford University Medical Center] Dr. Scott Atlas said — I thought this was a good quote: 'Of course, we can [do it]. Everyone else in the…Western world, our peer nations are doing it. We are the outlier here.'"
McEnany continued, "The science is very clear on this, that — you know, for instance, you look at the JAMA Pediatrics study of 46 pediatric hospitals in North America that said the risk of critical illness from COVID is far less for children than that of seasonal flu."
She concluded, "The science is on our side here, and we encourage for localities and states to just simply follow the science, open our schools. It's very damaging to our children: There is a lack of reporting of abuse; there's mental depressions that are not addressed; suicidal ideations that are not addressed when students are not in school. Our schools are extremely important, they're essential, and they must reopen."
But CNN senior White House correspondent Jim Acosta condensed her response to this: "The White House Press Secretary on Trump's push to reopen schools: 'The science should not stand in the way of this.'"
That prompted a flurry of responses from Trump-haters, including The Washington Post's Jennifer Rubin, Rep Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and the Lincoln Project, a Republican political action committee dedicated to defeating President Trump's re-election.
One of Acosta's own CNN colleagues dressed Acosta down, as well as the Trump-haters who replied to him.
Jake Tapper tweeted, "Folks read the ENTIRE McEnany comment about 'the science should not stand in the way' of opening schools. She's arguing that the science is on the side of those who want to open them, she cites a JAMA study. I'm not taking a position on the matter but be fair."
"Not taking a position ... but be fair." That's gonna leave a mark.
Also on Thursday, the argument that kids can learn remotely was completely discredited by a passing remark Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman made to CNN's John King.
"And you have nearly half of Philadelphia's children that didn't even log on, let alone receive any instruction, didn't even log on from March, when the schools closed, to the end of the school year," he said. "So there's an idea of what will be lost if we open schools."
King never asked a follow-up question.
It may have been a passing observation to King, but it was a "stunning" admission to CNN's Betsy Klein.
"One half of Philadelphia's school children didn't log on to remote learning this spring, Lt. Gov. John Fetterman says on CNN, highlighting the disproportional impact this pandemic has had on our nation's most vulnerable," she said. "Stunning."
The "disproportional impact" is the result of some homes lacking personal computers and internet access, and others lacking supervision.
And according to a New York Times report, that income and wealth gap may affect education even further if public schools continue digging in their heels.
The newspaper reported Thursday that in communities across the country — from Hawaii to New York — public schools were either not planning to reopen or would offer classes only a few days a week, whereas private schools in the same communities were planning to hold classes as usual.
The decision by public schools to obstinately remain closed isn't, as McEnany outlined, science-based. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, "the risk of critical illness from COVID is far less for children than that of seasonal flu."
But what of the teaching staff?
The same Dr. Atlas that McEnany referred to told Fox News Channel's Martha MacCallum Wednesday that children — even if they contract COVID — "rarely pass the disease to adults."
And if they do — "Teaching is a young profession," he said. "In the United States half the teachers are 40 or less and a quarter of them are under 30. Ninety percent are under 60. They have almost zero risk in this."
Atlas said the real harm in not opening "is to the children."
Today's "essential workers" include grocery clerks, Walmart greeters, and Home Depot employees.
If a liquor store is essential, a public school should be also.
If a private school teacher is essential, a public school teacher should also be.
The only difference between public and private schools is a union — and a Democratic governor who cares more about defying Trump than protecting the country's most vulnerable population.
Keeping schools closed is institutionalized child abuse. Open them up.
Michael Dorstewitz is a retired lawyer and has been a frequent contributor to BizPac Review and Liberty Unyielding. He is also a former U.S. Merchant Marine officer and an enthusiastic Second Amendment supporter, who can often be found honing his skills at the range. Read Michael Dorstewitz's Reports — More Here.
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