So far they’re not off to a great start
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Oregon Democrats are showing their true colors, as discrimination and systemic racism are quickly being defined within the action of their enforced policy, rather than its claimed intent.
Small mom and pop businesses owned across Oregon have been ordered to shut down, in what began as an emergency executive order to flatten the curve on deaths. That initial two week lockdown has snowballed into the New Year, whereby large retailers have been deemed essential, and small businesses have been closed, fined or cited by OSHA and the OLCC under Governor's orders. According to Sandy, Oregon Mayor Stan Pulliam Governor Brown claimed days ago she had the data to prove small businesses and gyms (beside 24 Hour Fitness which was never ordered to close) pose a higher risk of spreading COVID-19, than shopping malls, or Walmart. So far Brown has failed to release the data she claims exists, failed to be transparent in her decision making, or proved small businesses, and restaurants pose any higher risk than that of corporate retailers and large chain restaurants. Cities and Counties across Oregon have had enough, and are planning to reopen January first, citing discriminatory practices, and unjustified endangerment.
Mayor elect Scott Keyser of Molalla Oregon gave a well-informed speech Saturday December 26th at a rally held in the heart of main street. Keyser stated "Most cases we're seeing pop up right now are happening at in-home, small gatherings where masking and social distancing goes out the window". He then asked the crowd "when you have friends over are you making them wear a mask inside?", the crowd rumbled No. Keyser then asked "are you enforcing social distancing or sanitizing countertops and toilet seats after every use?" Again the crowd said no. Keyser then pointed to nearby stores, and exclaimed "But main street IS!" A group created by Molalla residents is calling for the town to responsibly reopen January First at 25% of capacity. Amy Grace is an admin of the Facebook group "Reopen Molalla", and stated "it just doesn't make sense to funnel everyone from our town into the two large corporate retail stores, rather than allowing residents to disperse in smaller numbers throughout town". Grace added that "Governor Brown's orders are counterproductive at this point, and placing our community at increased risk for long term damage both from the virus, and from poverty".
The correlation between negative health impacts and poverty have been studied ad nauseum. The federal government designates areas with fewer than one physician per 3,500 residents as "health professional shortage areas, or healthcare deserts". The Post-Gazette/Journal Sentinel data analysis shows that the majority of those are in urban poverty corridors, the rest are in rural areas like Molalla Oregon. This didn't stop Brown from issuing threats via a letter sent to city and county elected officials, claiming that she would ensure OSHA would be out in full force January first.
Aside from deciding who is capable of maintaining their own wealth, and subsequently their own health, the Democratic party has introduced two new legal concepts for the 2021 regular session that advocacy groups are calling flat out racist.
Legislative Concept 1099 -- on its way to becoming a bill for the 2021 session -- affects disadvantaged students by removing their ability to enroll into an online charter school in another district, if their district has a similar program. The slated bill does not, however, address availability. In person and online enrollment for charter schools is capped at 3% for each district. While a school district might have a charter program, depending upon current enrollment, it could also have a very long waitlist before new students can apply.
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Executive Director of Parents Rights in Education, Suzanne Gallagher stated, "this concept isn't new, it's very similar to policies passed during and after the Jim Crow era, whereby students of color, and impoverished students alike were kept within particular geographic locations, unable to access quality education."
In a press release from healthcare advocacy group "Oregonians For Medical Freedom" racial disparities in healthcare are also addressed. This time in reference to legal concept 1701. The legal concept doesn't have a bill title yet, but the action of the bill would place children of color at much greater risk for death and injury. A similar bill HB3063 came before the 2019 legislative assembly, whereby advocates highlighted the bill would remove over 35,000 students from school in Oregon. Many of which reported having IEP's, disabilities, or received government assistance for the school lunch program.
Governor Brown and Speaker of the House Tina Kotek have promised this 2021 regular session would see a much needed focus addressing systemic racism, equity and inclusion. So far they're not off to a great start.
Photo by Zach Vessels on Unsplash
|Post Date: 2020-12-28 13:19:58||Last Update: 2021-01-01 23:38:04|