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Steven Singer hears the growing demand to reopen schools in the midst of the pandemic, and he sees an ulterior motive.
The clamor to reopen the schools is not about education or even the lives of children, but freeing their parents to go back to work.
He writes that despite the lack of testing or vaccines, the Trump administration is eager to open up the economy, and reopening schools is central to that goal.
The rich need the poor to get back to work. And they’re willing to put our lives on the line to do it.
What’s worse, they’re willing to put our children’s lives on the line.
I don’t know about you, but I’m not willing to risk my daughter’s life so that the stock market can open back up.
As a public school teacher, I’m not willing to bet my students lives so that the airlines and cruise industry can get back in the green.
Nor am I willing to gamble with my own life even if it means the NBA, NFL and MLB can start playing games and Hollywood can start premiering first run movies again.
There’s still so much we don’t know about COVID-19.
Initial reports concluded that older people were more susceptible to it, but as infections have played out worldwide, we’ve seen that 40% of patients are between 20-50 years of age. Children seem mostly asymptomatic. However, many immunologists suspect they are acting as carriers spreading the virus to the older people with whom they come into contact.
Children have a more difficult time with the constant hand washing and separating themselves at least 6 feet apart recommended by health experts. This is one of the justifications for closing schools in the first place. If we reopen schools too quickly, it could jumpstart another wave of infections.