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Re-Entry Anxiety Fueled by Experts and Media Alarmists

Newly free-range citizens taking first steps outside lockdown are being whipped into fear.

As states begin to slowly reopen after two months of Coronavirus lockdowns, government officials and dominant media outlets are sending Americans the message that they are infants whose every step must be measured and either applauded or rebuked.

Be Afraid of Everything

“I have no idea what my life will look like,” Jennifer Merves Robbins, 49, told The Philadelphia Inquirer. “Will we have camp? Will I ever work in an office again? Will we ever feel comfortable eating out? Will I ever be comfortable getting into an elevator with people? I’m frightened when I walk through the city and see people not wearing masks. What will this new normal look like?”

A Long Island, NY, health official issued recess rules for adults on playing tennis in public: “You can kick [other people’s] balls, but you can’t touch them … To avoid confusion between whose balls are whose you can use a marker like a Sharpie to put an ‘X’ … to put someone’s initials on them.”

The Los Angeles Times weighs the risks involved in seeing friends again. Going on a “Socially distanced walk, with (let’s admit it) some drift,” is one frightening scenario bravely tackled by The Times’ intrepid scribe. Just how dangerous would such a meeting be?

“Verdict: Relatively low risk.

“Context: It’s hard to always know you are six feet apart, and [an infectious disease expert quoted by the paper] said there’s nothing magical about six feet anyway. Some virus-laden droplets expelled in a cough or sneeze travel three feet, while others might make it as far as nine.”

It’s easy to laugh at all this artificially inflated hysteria until one reflects on the wild success of the vast social-control campaign that has been engineered against American citizens over the past eight weeks. Fear is the essential linchpin needed to keep the “new normal” programming running. Government officials, Democrat governors and mayors most especially, and the health “experts” they keep on tap know they must continue to fan the scaremongering flames in order to maintain their unprecedented grip on the day-to-day lives of regular Americans.

Control After Lockdown

But you can’t keep 330 million people locked in their rooms forever. “Phase One,” to borrow a term from the expert class, involved terrifying citizens with the specter of impending death at the hands of a quickly spreading virus. Inevitably there would eventually have to be a “Phase Two,” in which the fear of death would give way to the resumption of normal communal activities. How to remain in charge as this happens? Whip up and exacerbate social anxieties as people begin to interact with strangers once again.

And so we see Orwellian oddities such as the San Antonio Police Department installing temperature detection cameras that can “scan 2,000 people an hour quickly and accurately,” as FOX San Antonio reports.

These devices, given official credibility via the city police department, are monuments to the Rule of Paranoia in a formerly free nation. “This system is highly accurate to within 0.3 degrees centigrade using a thermal camera to measure the hottest spot on the face, which is the inner eye, and alerts immediately if someone has a fever,” FOX San Antonio reports. “An image of the person’s face is shown on an iPad and an alarm goes off if the person’s temperature is above 99.5 degrees.”

The minimum threshold for a low-grade fever is said to be 99.8 degrees. San Antonians must love the idea that they can set off police alarms with their body temperature without even being sick. But the co-founder of the company that created the detectors had a ready answer for that kind of thinking. He sees his product as a way to ease the agitation of newly free-range citizens taking their first tentative steps outside of lockdown.

“A lot of people are going to be afraid to go outside when restrictions are lifted, so having a system in place to tell if someone has an elevated temperature is going to help people go back into society and feel comfortable sitting in a restaurant again, flying on a plane, going to a sports event, convention or concert. We provide a first line of defense,” Athena Chief Technology Officer Chris Ciabarra told FOX San Antonio. Translation: Big Brother is here for your personal peace of mind, Dear Citizen.

The Hysteria Will Be Televised

As we have seen repeatedly throughout history, celebrities and leading entertainers are often trotted out to boost support for mass social-conditioning campaigns. It’s no surprise then to see professional sports being used to inflate the anxiety hype around reopening America. A draft proposal for a Major League Baseball (MLB) 2020 Operations Manual received heavy media coverage over the May 16-17 weekend. Reports of the special Coronavirus protocols being planned make Long Island tennis rules seem reasonable. Batting practice pitchers will be made to wear masks, as will managers and coaches in the dugout during games. Dugout telephones will be “disinfected after each use,” the draft proposal states, according to the Associated Press. “Players may not touch their face to give signs, and they’re not allowed to lick their fingers.” High-fives will not be allowed.

Fielders will be “encouraged to retreat several steps away from the baserunner” after each pitch, and base coaches are to be kept from approaching runners or umpires during play.

Social anxiety as America’s National Pastime. One can only hope MLB teams don’t install temperature detection cameras in the stands. A controversial play at the plate may spur a fevered response from fans, setting off screeching alarms, warning Americans everywhere that a potential Coronavirus droplet threat has materialized.


Read more from Joe Schaeffer.

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