Gov­ern­ment must have faith in Cana­di­ans

Toronto Sun - - COMMENT -

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.

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