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In response to "We have to do better," written by School Board Chair Jeff Ross, I agree 100%. We have to do better. Doing better starts with regaining control of the school board from those who choose to force our kids to wear masks at school, despite having zero evidence to support their use.

Ross referenced guidance from the CDC and MDH in informing the board’s policies. In fact, data directly from MDH refutes the concept altogether. The total number of deaths from COVID-19 for those aged 10-19 is exactly 0 out of over 100,000 reported cases in the state of Minnesota. Let that sink in for a second. I would now ask Jeff to please tell us again how the MDH is informing this decision process.

Coupling the complete lack of evidence for mask usage with the near zero risk to kids from this virus, makes the blind imposition of these policies ignorant at best and purposefully abusive at worst.

Ross stated in his letter, "We are called to be role models for our children." Again, I agree, but what type of role models do we want to be? We're certainly not being quality role models by perpetually displaying irrational fear to our kids. Why is it in America, “Land of the Free and Home of the Brave,” we’re cowering to something we now know is not nearly the threat it was once thought to be? We should be careful about what we’re impressing upon our children.

One of the most impactful speeches from the school board meeting on Sept. 27 was delivered by a woman who immigrated here from the Soviet Union. She was clear; these measures were all too familiar to what she witnessed while living in a communist country, “I didn’t come to this country so you can drag me back to what I have left behind.” When those who have lived in communist countries are sounding the alarm, we ought to be listening intently.

This is no longer about a virus. If it were, there would be clear data to cite in support of the board’s policies. There simply is not. Unfortunately, this has become a situation where we’re discovering almost daily that one government bureaucrat or another has lied to us in some regard. This dishonesty breeds distrust. It’s time that we operate based on facts and not emotional fear.

This has become an issue of freedom. Of individualism vs. collectivism. Of the right of parents to determine what is best for their children vs. government making those decisions. History shows us that communism and collectivism always fail. Let’s not go down that road.

Freedom, individualism and self-determination are what make us the most powerful and prosperous country the world has ever known. Let’s not forget those principles in the name of feigned safety. So let’s do better. Let’s unify around what makes us great as a community and as a country. Stand for freedom, stand for America, and unmask our kids!

Grant Norland

Chaska

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