Were The Mass Covid-19 Lockdowns An Overreaction?

Were the mass lockdowns over coronavirus an overreaction?

Some very vocal critics think so.

Two urgent care physicians from Bakersfield, who own several urgent care facilities, went viral last week with help from Tesla CEO Elon Musk. Musk retweeted a press conference by urgent care doctors Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi held where they pushed for the shelter-in-place orders to be lifted. During the press conference, Massihi said:

“You have a 0.03% chance of dying from COVID in the state of California. Does that necessitate sheltering in place? Does that necessitate shutting down medical systems? Does that necessitate people being out of work?”

While Musk said the doctors made 'good points,' the American College of Emergency Physicians and American College of Emergency Medicine disagreed vehemently and said their remarks were 'reckless' and 'inconsistent with current science and epidemiology regarding Covid-19.' They also insinuated that the two doctors were attempting to increase their personal financial interests with the publicity.

There's a big fight right now between those wanting restrictions relaxed quickly and those looking to do a 'slow reopening' of the economy. You can see a frustrated public looking for cities to reopen in protests like the ones we've seen in Huntington Beach, and with the rumor that Gov. Newsom is planning on closing ALL beaches effective this weekend, we're likely to see an even bigger pushback and more protests in the days to come.

Alex Berenson is an author and former NY Times reporter who has been loudly critical of the decision to lock down cities all across the country. Berenson says that if you look at it the statistical models realistically, the response to the Covid-19 pandemic was overblown.

In an email to the Washington Times Berenson said:

"It is now clear that the lockdowns were a major mistake everywhere except the New York City metro area, and possibly even there. The argument as to whether they were a mistake in NYC rests on a couple of complicated debates about whether they work at all in time to make a difference, but everywhere else, it is clear that the coronavirus is simply not dangerous enough to the general population to justify the measures we have taken."

Stanford University School of Medicine professor John Ioannidis said the inital decision to lock down things was probably the right thing to do. But now it's no longer necessary because while the virus is very devastating in certain settings, like nursing homes and hospitals, for the vast majority of the public, it's results in no more than a mild infection.

Ioannidis says that what's more devastating is the lasting impact of massive unemployment and declining economy, not to mention the mental health harm that we could see because of an extended lockdown or a slow open to the economy.

More critics proclaim simply that the pandemic is 'over' and the lockdown needs to stop so businesses can reopen and people can get back to work. These critics point to Sweden as a model, which continues to isolate those citizens at high risk and limit gatherings to no more than 50 people, but schools, restaurants and shops are open. Some believe this approach is helping the country develop 'herd immunity.'

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