(USA Features) Sen. John Kennedy said Thursday that Americans have shown “decency” in obeying social distancing orders and other coronavirus-related instructions, but that people won’t stay in their homes indefinitely.
As such, the Louisiana Republican said it was time to think about reopening the country, especially amid reports Friday that deaths and hospitalizations were falling.
“Before the well-intentioned arugula and tofu crowd gets all lubed up, I’m not talking about opening it Monday, but we’ve got to get this economy open,” he said. “Government shut it down. We’ve got some bad unemployment numbers today. I wasn’t surprised.
“I mean, this economy has been chewed up, spit out, and stepped on. It looks like a scene from Mad Max. I think it will be temporary, and we got to be smart about how we do it,” Kennedy continued.
“The president is shortly going to appoint a task force to talk about how we do it, but Austria is opening its economy; Denmark is opening its economy, gradually, as we will have to do. Germany is starting to open its economy back up, and we’ve got to start talking about how to do that here,” he said.
“Once again, I’m not saying to put the economy ahead of public safety, but the fact is that both of them are important,” he continued.
“We know that coronavirus can kill you, but so can poverty. And the American people — where we are today in terms of public health because of the American people. Camus, the French existentialist, wrote a novel I think in the ’30s; it was called The Plague. And in it, one of his characters says the only way to fight a plague is through common decency, and the American people have demonstrated a lot of common decency,” he said.
“The healthcare workers, the food workers, but also the people who’ve been willing to stay home. But they’re not going to stay home much longer.”