Although America has a reputation for being rather libertarian with regards to personal rights and one’s freedom of movement, a new opinion poll by Rasmussen Reports shows that Americans are turning hardline in the face of the new and deadly Chinese coronavirus. Two out of three want to ban interstate travel and fine those who violate social distancing guidelines.
To be precise, 67% of likely U.S. voters say they want to ban all out-of-state travelers from entering their state — except for emergencies. A mere 21% are opposed, 12% are undecided. As for fining those who break social distancing guidelines: 68% support such a measure, while 20% oppose it and, again, 12% are not sure.
That’s all incredibly fascinating. But what’s even more interesting is this tidbit from the survey:
[T]here is virtually no difference of opinion on either question among Democrats, Republicans and voters not affiliated with either major political party.
So, yes, this opinion is widely held. Conservatives, liberals, ‘moderates’… They all agree that strict measures have to be taken.
The question now is: will more cities and even governors do what New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has done? In New York, police have been ordered to levy fines against rule-breakers, from $250 to $500. If Rasmussen is to be believed, a large majority of Americans want the see the same thing happen in their city (and state).
Of course, some will call on President Trump to do this, but America doesn’t have a top-down system. It’s bottom-up, not the other way around. This means that it’s up to local and state officials to make sure that their people are protected against this invisible killer. The federal government may have to get involved at a late date, but only and truly as a last resort, when the individual states can’t handle it.
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