Government must have faith in Canadians
It was frustrating for many Canadians to hear that Dr. Theresa Tam is now recommending masks be worn when out in public, particularly when there is no guarantee you can keep six feet away from people.
Frustrating, because she had previously recommended against masks and said the evidence suggests they don’t work. And now she’s telling us the exact opposite.
These reversals — just like the one on the border closure — don’t inspire confidence in our top officials.
In truth, it appeared the feds just didn’t want regular Canadians buying up and hoarding medical masks that were desperately needed for frontline health-care workers.
That concern was a legitimate one and they should have levelled with us about the truth and just treated us like adults.
There’s a similar phenomenon playing out right now that involves the reopenings that are happening to varying degrees across the country.
We are repeatedly being told by our officials that we have to be cautious and play by the rules or else things could flare up and society will be forced to shutter once again.
It’s true, but here’s the thing: The public has largely been ahead of government on this. Like with the wearing of masks, many Canadians have taken precautions prior to being told to by officials.
That’s the thing about adults in a free society, they make choices. And Canadians have been making good choices the past few months.
The vast majority of people are adhering to physical distancing measures. As stores and businesses reopen, Canadians will continue to follow the rules.
Yes, there will be some disagreement about the details. There may even be a few arguments in grocery store aisles. But, ultimately, Canadians will figure this out.
Business leaders have likewise been ahead of the curve. Industry associations and business councils are already putting out guidelines and sharing best practices.
Some of this has been done in concert with government, but others have roared ahead on their own.
Things could still get worse in
Canada, whether it’s increased cases or a second wave.
Government needs to have faith in people though. The public understands the risks, and they’re already acting responsibly.