You are currently viewing Open Letter to the Governor of the State of Florida and the Hillsborough County Commissioners.

Open Letter to the Governor of the State of Florida and the Hillsborough County Commissioners.

Throughout history outbreaks or pandemics have hit our country and the world hard.  Then governments instituted draconian measures to fight these barley understood diseases.  In time, the science behind the outbreaks and pandemics became understood.  These diseases were studied, vaccinations developed, and other techniques were implemented to help control the outbreaks.  American history is full of such examples.

The Founding Fathers of the US Constitution wrote into this unique document certain rights that they did not always have.  They experienced a government that was uncaring and or unwilling to adopt over time to the will of the people.  While the resistance to the rule of a monarch started with a few, it spread to the majority.  The rights of the people were being tread upon, which was reflected upon on a battle standard with the words, “Don’t tread on me”.

Today, our medical sciences are sufficiently advanced that with a bit of dedicated time and resources, outbreaks or pandemics can be quickly and efficiently combated.  It is the science that provides the empirical data that is used to fight these diseases.  Without the empirical science, outbreaks would be common place amongst the population of the United States. 

The Coronavirus has hit the world in varying degrees of seriousness.  Most governments have implemented the old response of draconian measures treading upon the liberty of their people in a response to combat the outbreak.  These draconian measures are not based upon empirical science or data, they are at best, knee jerk responses.  While most of the world governments are doing this, I am shocked and amazed at the knee jerk response that you have helped implement with-in the State of Florida.

Part of the responsibilities of the government is to help ensure the safety of the people.  This can be reflected through our history by various liberties that have been taken from the public at various times.  The draft was instituted to ensure that enough fighting men were trained and available during times of war.  Those drafted had their liberties taken from them, and often they died without the ability to exercise their freedoms.  They did this to help to ensure that the liberties of all Americans would not be tread upon in the future.

Another example that would be more appropriate, would be during the smallpox outbreak in the early 1900’s.  Various states mandated that vaccinations would be implemented, imposing penalties on those that refused.  Again, the American people had their liberties tread upon in the name of the greater good.  These liberties were first taken from Americans, then tested in the Courts.  They were responses to the danger and health of the American people at that time that was not fully understood.

Since then, the draft has been rescinded, and mass vaccinations for all has all but stopped.  The will of the people was heard, and the government responded appropriately.  In the mean time, laws were passed that have not been tested fully in the Court of Law.  These laws give the State and Counties extreme levels of authority to restrict and remove liberties of Floridians all without public say.  We the people accept these laws as necessary during times of crisis and need.  Here in Florida and Hillsborough County these laws are geared towards the response that is typically needed during hurricanes.

The way these laws are being used today is a knee jerk response to the Coronavirus.  There is no empirical data to date that proves that social distancing works to limit exposure to the Coronavirus.  Without that empirical data, the State and County are violating the peoples liberties.  I understand the government wants to help to protect the people.  In this case, the need is not there.  Don’t look to the media for your facts, look at the numbers yourself.

As I write this, the rate of infection for the entire state is at nine hundredths of a percent.  This is such low rate, that your chances of encountering somebody infected is almost nonexistent.  In Hillsborough County the rate of infection is at six hundredths of a percent, even less that the State level.  How can you, our elected representatives, even begin to justify your actions of treading upon the liberties you were elected to protect?

Going deeper into the numbers gives you more information to act upon.  Admittedly, I don’t have access to the actual raw data that you may have, and have to rely upon the information the Government is making public.  I have to assume that the information is accurate and is not slewed in any way.

Percent of Population Infected0.09%0.06%
Percent Positive Hospitalized13%15%
Percent of Population Hospitalized0.01%0.01%
Percent Positive Deaths2.3%2%
Percent of Population Deaths0.002%0.001%

The numbers I used to arrive at the above information are in the below chart.  This information was gathered on 4-13-2020 before noon time using open sources of information.  Due to the nature of open source information, inaccuracies are possible.

Total Cases20601790
Positive Residents20035770

Your response to this Emergency is simply, over reaction.  There is nothing in the numbers, that demands a response at the level you have decided on.  You are treading upon your constituents liberties for no apparent reason other than you want too.  Your actions are the same responses that history has shown us, and is done in ignorance of the facts.  I ask that our liberties be restored immediately.  Don’t work on it, don’t wait another day, hour, or minute, just restore our liberties.

I can already anticipate your response, who are you to ask this?  What do you think you know that we (the government) doesn’t know?  You will say look at New York City, California, Italy, and other places where the government response was slow and the pandemic is out of control.  My response is this, we are Florida, we are not New York City, California, or Italy.  We are a State because we are unique in our way of life.

I can ask this of you, as I am a citizen of the State of Florida and Hillsborough County.  I don’t know more than you, but I do look at the numbers, and they don’t lie.  Like many before me, and many to follow me, I was a solider on active duty for 20 years.  I fought overseas for 4 1/2 years so that other Americans that couldn’t or wouldn’t didn’t have too.  I did this because I am a firm believer in the principals our Founding Fathers outlined in the Delectation of Independence.

I don’t believe that any one persons liberties out weigh any other persons.  I do believe that one of the reasons the government exists to ensure the safety and well being of all our citizens.  I am looking at the facts as I have been given and presented, and they don’t require the response you have chosen to take.

Closing entire businesses in an effort to reduce the spread of infection, limiting the number of people we can meet with, stopping citizens from going where they want and when, these are all responses that are based totally out of fear and not based on the empirical data.  Your advisors are going to give you the worse case scenario, to ensure that their advice is taken more seriously.  As with any advice given, the person receiving it has to question the motive behind the advisor.  Do they seriously have the public’s health in mind, or do they have another agenda behind them?

Governor and Commissioners, if you have more information that is based upon hard data, empirical facts, then please present it to us.  At this time in history we are a more educated and informed public than ever before.  We can look at the data, and make informed decisions for ourselves.  If we choose to social distance ourselves, then let us make that choice.  We want to continue operating our businesses and lives as we see fit with minimal government interference and control.  We as a populace can decide for ourselves what our response should be, we don’t need, or want, the government to enforce your opinion on us in the form of a manufactured emergency by those who gain the most from it.

Thank-you for taking the time to read this.

Derrin Knoop

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