Is Our Freedom Ebbing Away?

This post is in response to the article: “Contact Tracing Program Introduced in Kentucky” on Lex18.com.

Our newly appointed Kentucky governor introduced a seven month contact tracing program yesterday during a press conference. It’s basically a strategy to follow around  victims of COVID-19 (unspecified as to how) and then health officials will contact the dozens or hundreds of people those victims came in contact with and they will follow up with these contacted people with those annoying questions everyday for, I’m assuming, two weeks: “Have you had symptoms of a fever?” “How do you feel currently?” etc.

Except they wouldn’t have to ask if they’ve been in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 or if they’ve traveled internationally recently, because they will have those answers available, thanks to the tracing program.

On the one hand, it seems like a good use of technology and promoting safety amongst the citizens of the state.

But safety against what, exactly?

I’m not an anti-corona guy, though I do think it’s been magnified (check out my thoughts on that here.) I won’t list all the hundreds of things that more people die of per day in a given year because we’ve all seen the videos and statistics (if not, here’s a source).

The point is, there are much better reasons to trace people. I believe people convicted of sexual crimes with minors are tagged with an ankle bracelet, so that’s good. What about recovering addicts who sign a consent waiver? Those are good reasons to trace people, in my opinion. If you think of a third reason, let me know.

But we’re in a world now where free and innocent people with a flu bug have to be tracked by the government? Yikes.

Now, I’ll be honest. When I saw that Will Smith movie, Enemy of the State, back in 1998, I couldn’t figure out what the big problem was. Why was there a growing paranoia of the government watching us? And even up until fairly recently I was very passive about the Patriot Act, because my thought process was: “I’ve got nothing to hide; so what?”

But the truth is, most people have nothing to hide. Therefore, as a society, we’ve earned the right to maintain that freedom of privacy. Now, if ten or twenty percent of America’s population were victim-minded criminals and terrorists, then I think it’d be fair to be having this conversation about tracing people’s footsteps.

Not to make too forward of a connection, consider Nazi Germany. The Nazis were told they were liberated and so on, but even they were tracked by the Gestapo.

The takeaway from this post isn’t that I’m comparing mid-2020 America to Nazi Germany, because I’m not.

But let’s focus in on the most alarming part of this article I listed above. Governor Andy Beshear, upon introducing the seven month contact tracing program, said that it will combine public participation and technology.

The article goes on to state that contact officials (700 hired) will contact individuals who have tested positive and then retrace their steps.

Notice what’s missing between the two paragraphs above?

I’m left wondering what this technology is that Beshear hints at. Is it the tracking application that was updated to most of our phones?  Is it going to be time for us to soon be microchipped?

And what about this public participation he’s urging from us? I feel like that’s also a little haunting, but I think I’ve spoken enough on this topic for now. I’d really like to know what your thoughts are on this topic.

One thing’s for sure. The discussion has finally been put on the table: It’s no longer, “What does freedom mean to me?” Now, it’s,”What is freedom? And how far is it still able to stretch?”

Published by Andrew Toy

Writer when I'm not being a husband or dad. So mostly just a husband and dad.

2 thoughts on “Is Our Freedom Ebbing Away?

  1. Feel free to block me after reading this, as I think you are not going to like what I say- I am not a troll and I extend my apologies.
    Covid-19 is NOT the flu, it’s genetic makeup is based in RNA not DNA, which is why we humans have no resistance to it. It is meaningless comparing it to cancers, heart disease etc because it is an infectious disease.
    I am thinking you don’t know any health workers looking after people with this disease otherwise you would think very differently.
    The USA is in a very unenviable position regarding the response of your President regarding this health emergency, community transmission and the lack of resources available to you as a population. I have seen blog posts and retorts from American citizens who scoff at other countries because they are smaller and their infection rates are considerably lower, but per capita, the USA is doing very badly in this pandemic. As an Australian, quite frankly, I wish I was living in New Zealand as their lockdown was harsher and more effective than ours. We are doing well at the moment, contact tracing has been enthusiastically taken up by the population and we are (on the whole) all supporting draconian measures for THE COMMON GOOD.
    To the rest of the world, it looks like Americans think only of the individual and not the community. I don’t know if this is true, but it certainly appears this way, I wish I didn’t sound so harsh, but the American public needs to stop looking at this disease as a political issue- it isn’t.
    Do yourselves a favour and start educating yourselves and think scientifically.

    1. Jennyrecorder, no I’m not tempted to block you in the least. I don’t think it’s a matter of who’s right and who’s wrong. We’re all bombarded with so many professional opinions from every corner, that it’s a matter of who picked the right source to side with or not.

      I do agree with you (that doesn’t mean we’re right) that to the rest of the world, Americans think mostly of the individual vs. the community. American’s are super selfish and self-centered, but I can’t compare us to the rest of the world, and I’m not taking into account the Southern hospitality and mid-western friendliness that our country can still be known for.

      No one, not even the best scientists, can predict how this is all going to turn out. Right now, I think we’re all playing by separate rules (look at New Zealand’s handling of this vs. America’s). But one thing I do know is that some very rich and powerful people are taking this time to figure out how to gain as much from this crisis as possible, and I’m afraid we’re going to be hurt in the end.

      But then again, I could be wrong, lol.

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