Is Galveston’s council ready to relax COVID-19 protocols

A notice requiring shoppers to wear face masks is posted at Hendley Market, 2010 Strand St. in Galveston, on Friday, Feb. 26, 2021.


After nearly a year, some city council members say it’s time to do away with emergency orders and relax COVID restrictions. But as tourism season looms, they aren’t quite ready to remove mask requirements tied to the disaster declaration.

Keri Heath: 409-683-5241; or on Twitter @HeathKeri.


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(30) comments

Wayne D Holt

Thank you, Mayor Brown, for being receptive to removing so-called emergency orders that have been in place for months, despite there never having been a medical emergency. And thank you, Councilman Quiroga, for suggesting the responsibility for personal health decisions should return to where it belongs: on the individual.

Fifteen days to flatten the curve has turned into 365 and we're still beating this dead horse. If you're under 50, the fatality rate is 0.02% of cases (not infected as we have no way of knowing that number). You are more likely to be injured or die in an automobile accident on the way to being tested for this virus. If you're over 65, take those precautions that reflect your health status and your comfort level.

The present mask rule seems to be written in Urdu, based on the number of people who don't know what it says and insist it is compulsory, and the total misrepresentation in the signage businesses display regarding masking.

To recap: Masking is NOT compulsory anywhere you can maintain a distance of six-feet from others. If you do that, you have met the requirements of the order without a mask. It doesn't surprise me there haven't been any citations from the city marshal's office since June. If you know the law, keep distancing and assert your rights, they don't have any basis for a prosecution. They have better things to do than drag people into court for cases they can't win. The masking "order" is a great example of optics over science as it insists you have to do something the actual language of the order says you don't have to do, and do it with masks and materials that are useless for the purpose, as the warnings on the mask boxes clearly state.

I suggest that Councilman Collins keep his mask on, or perhaps wear two if he really wants to go Full Frontal Fauci. As I recall, Collins suggested in one of his district mailings a repetition of the New York City death count was inevitable here. He is as wrong about masks now as he was about fatality rates then.

Social distancing make sense because it is the same behavior we routinely do with anyone coughing, sneezing, hacking, dribbling or exhibiting other behaviors that alert us to respiratory distress. Masks are medical theater for those who are content to take direction from headlines instead of reading the underlying research. You know the CDC is full of it when they have to quote mask studies using articulated mannequin heads that are programmed to "cough" continuously for 30 minutes into a sensor face to face with it. If you are willing to let someone cough in your face for 30 minutes uninterrupted, you need a much more elevated level of intervention than a mask will provide.

Gary Scoggin

"despite there never having been a medical emergency." - Wayne, there's about a half-million American families that say otherwise. At the risk of beating a dead horse, I will remind everyone that the mask is there to protect others moreso than yourself. That is why, even though I've been vaccinated, I will continue to wear one until science says that I cannot be asymptomatic and a threat to those around me. We are finally on a great trajectory as a nation with regard to number of cases (thank you Project Warp Speed and President Trump), and let's be careful about easing up on the gas too fast.

Wayne D Holt

Gary, the CDC reports only 6% of that number died OF Covid. The remaining died WITH Covid. Anyone who is objective and has been tracking this issue knows that a Covid diagnosis is the fig leaf covering a multitude of health sins that Americans fall victim to. No, 500,000 Americans did not die of Covid. To believe otherwise is to disbelieve what the CDC itself has publicly acknowledged. Those folks also died WITH diabetes, cardiac failure, pneumonia, obesity, etc. But Covid was the diagnosis that was pushed for both political and financial reasons.

Mark Wyant

Three million people die every year in America, 800,000 from heart disease. When you going to regulate portion sizes, make greasy food illegal and ostracize and socially distance fat people?

Charlotte O'rourke

Hmm, today President Biden said wear masks. No time to slack off. Same from the new head of CDC. CDC says variants may be a potential issue and causing numbers to stop dropping. Wear masks until more data comes in sounds like a smart idea since masks don’t hurt anyone.

But not wearing one can kill an unsuspecting and susceptible human being.

But the state and local areas of Texas are saying let’s get rid of masks. It’s crazy having two totally different messages. And I will stick with the message that can save a life.

Wayne D Holt

But not wearing one can kill an unsuspecting and susceptible human being.

So can getting behind the wheel of a car. But we all do it. Unless you are willing to wear a mask for the rest of your life--and yes, they can keep coming up with reasons to, as Fauci just said those who have been vaccinated should avoid crowds and wear a mask--at some point you have to see this for what it really is.

Kids killing themselves at record numbers out of despair. Seniors dying alone because of crackpot bureacrats and their mandates. Alcoholism and domestic abuse off the charts. American small and medium businesses destroyed and lives ruined by folks who love to give orders while never missing a paycheck.

At what point does this insanity become so obvious even the "if it saves one life we have to do whatever they tell us" folks see this for what it is?

Susan Fennewald

no, now is not the time to relax the mask rule. Its effective and the virus is still very much around. Also, everyone is used to it at this point, and its easy to just put on your mask when you enter a store. It's still up to the individual - if you don't want to wear a mask, then don't go into a store where you may be in close contact with other people.

Wayne D Holt

How incredible that just days into the Biden reign we start seeing the numbers go down and hope returns. Incredible in the sense of who believes this malarkey?

It's still up to the individual - if you don't want to wear a mask, then don't go into a store where you may be in close contact with other people.

No, I'm afraid not. The law says you may enter any store where you maintain six feet of distance. Call a cop if the management disagrees and they can read the order to them. No one has to feel like a leper just because some folks have lost all sense of proportion on this issue.

George Laiacona

Mask rules are in place for a good reason. Just because some individuals haven’t contacted the Trump Virus yet doesn’t mean that they are safe. When our legitimate President announces that we are safe to go without masks, then will be the time, not before.

Wayne D Holt

When our legitimate President announces that we are safe to go without masks, then will be the time, not before.

Joe Biden is at the point he doesn't even know where he is half the time. That's why even Democrats want to remove the nuclear option from his sole control. If you're waiting for Ol' Joe to make that announcement, it will most likely be a press release as he doesn't appear to be able to verbally deliver a paragraph without mauling it to the point of incomprehensibility.

Gary Miller

Mask rules are in place for a good reason. Because lobbyists are giving Fausi millions of $ to claim masks are needed. Now they are paying him to say two or three masks are better. 500,000+ Americans died after wearing masks. The majority were infected by people wearing masks. Re seachers have rated masks effectivness. Single 5% effective. Double mask 25% effective. Triple mask 50%. Face shield goggles and triple mask almost 100%. Actually goggles without a mask is more effective than any number of masks. Eyes are the most likely entry point for the virus. If you can blow out a burning match while wearing masks they are 100% non effective.

Bailey Jones

This is a simple one. When people stop dying - that's when you stop wearing masks.

Carlos Ponce

There are two certainties in life: death and taxes.

Wayne D Holt

Bailey, you can't be serious. When people stop dying? One person dying from Covid and everyone should wear a mask? One hundred? One thousand? How many? And how did you arrive at that figure?

As we've seen clearly between states with strict mandates and those without, as well as countries with contrasting approaches, the difference is negligible regarding masks. The only significant differences are in rates of alcoholism, suicide, failed businesses, enriching of the top .001% and other like benefits.

Craig Mason

Masks equal freedom. If we protect our fellow American with a mask, then businesses can thrive. I still remember when cities and states started outlawing smoking in public places. It was the end of the world for some, but think about how many lives have been saved by that.

Carlos Ponce

Which state mandated mask wearing? California is one of them. Did mask mandates lower infection rates? No. In fact they increased.

Jim Forsythe

California, Yesterday there were 4,682 new confirmed* cases, 0 recoveries, 399 deaths. The current 7-day rolling average of 5,441 new cases/day declined 47.09% from 14 days ago, while the average of 423 deaths/day grew 2.7% in California.

As the number of new confirmed* cases have decrease by 47.09% , the number of deaths will decrease in a few weeks. Mask wearing makes a difference.

Gary Scoggin

Jim, you know the MAGAs are fact-resistant.

Carlos Ponce

Jim quotes YESTERDAY'S STATS and NEW CONFIRMED CASES when the mask requirement occurred MONTHS AGO.

Really, Jim?

Carlos Ponce

Scoggin, you actually accept Jim's misuse of data to make a point? I din't know you were his toadie.

Jim Forsythe

I pointed out that the cases are decreasing by 47.09% from 14 days ago, shows that mask are working. If they were not working the rate would have increased.

Carlos Ponce

"14 days ago" [rolleyes]

How about when the pandemic was in full as was the California mask mandate? Jim is nitpicking data.

Wayne D Holt

It gets better. The UK reported 0 flu cases so far in 2021. Zero as in nada one. Over 68,000,000 people and not even one case of flu in 2021.

Meanwhile, Covid--cue the ominous organ music--is still stalking the land.

Do you believe this? Do you actually think out of 68,000,000 people not one has been diagnosed with ordinary flu?

This is the same mentality running government "health" initiatives around the world. I now understand why Joe Biden makes sense to these people.

Wayne D Holt

I pointed out that the cases are decreasing by 47.09% from 14 days ago, shows that mask are working. If they were not working the rate would have increased.

Jim, you must be able to see how specious this logic is. If we could cut case count nearly in half in two weeks, why didn't it flatten the curve before now? A much more realistic assessment is the numbers are being massaged down, just like they were massaged up during the Trump administration.

No one can offer anything like a cogent reason for slashing rates in two weeks based on behavior that has been in place for the better part of a year.

Bailey Jones

The only proof one needs that the COVID protocols are effective is the remarkable decline in flu cases this year. It's not just masks - social distancing plays a huge part. If the protocols were not effective, there would be no change in flu cases.

I hope the decline in new cases continues - but it's not guaranteed. We saw a decline in May/June after the April surge, then a new larger surge in July. We saw a decline in September after the summer surge followed by a huge new surge in November - January. Now we're in a decline (although this "decline" is still as bad as the peak of the summer surge.) Given that we've vaccinated less than 10% of the population, there's nothing to prevent another surge this spring - except following the COVID protocols. I have no reason to believe that Americans will act to prevent another surge, and in fact, I'm seeing more and more people out in stores without masks. So I expect to see another surge, especially after spring break.

New cases bring new mutations, and some of these mutations are more infectious and resistant to the vaccines. It's a race, and based on our past performance, I predict that America will be among the last to cross the finish line.

Carlos Ponce

"remarkable decline in flu cases this year"

You fell for that one?

Flu - costs not covered by Federal Government.

Chinese Virus - Federal Government picks up the tab.

So EVERYTHING becomes a pandemic case!

Just look at all the shootings, vehicle accident deaths listed as "Covid".

But Bailey, wear a mask if you like for the rest of your life. Even in the coffin, insist that one be placed on you - otherwise no one will recognize you!

Wayne D Holt

THIS JUST IN: We now have what may turn out to be the Smoking Mask we've been searching for to explain the precipitous decline--one might be tempted to say damn near miraculous decline-- in case count.

Was it the vaccines? The overall decline actually started in mid-January, way too early for the numbers to reflect this level of improvement. Dr. Wafaa El-Sadr, professor of epidemiology and medicine at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, said the falling case numbers can’t be attributed to the COVID-19 vaccine, because not even a tenth of the population has been vaccinated, according to the CDC. Further, the drop is happening simultaneously in different countries all around the world, and not every country is vaccinating at the same rate or even using the same vaccine. So the “vaccines” are not causing the drop.

Well, could the Draconian lockdowns be the answer, the ones that have eviscerated entire country economies to Depression Era levels? New deaths from Covid in Sweden--which never locked down--have been declining faster than in the UK, with its neo-Orwellian healthcare Stasi controls. Uh, wasn't the lockdowns.

Masking? An absurdity on stilts. There are fewer people wearing masks now as healthscare fatigue, loosening standards and better information demolishes the idea this is "protection." BTW there never was a standard "masking" metric that could be applied to intelligently derive statistical conclusions about what a mask did. When you include everything from self-contained respirators to tissue strung across the face or Willie Nelson bandanas used to ward off virus particles you need an electron microscope to even detect, you can be sure that any assertion made about the general effectiveness of masking is made up, with zero science behind the statistic.

So...what could be the reason for the decline? How about this: the decline was first detected in mid-to late January. On January 13, the WHO published a memo regarding the problem of asymptomatic cases being discovered by PCR tests, and suggesting any asymptomatic positive tests be repeated. This followed up their previous memo, instructing labs around the world to use lower cycle thresholds (CT values) for PCR tests, as values over 35 could produce false positives. Essentially, in two memos the WHO ensured future testing would be less likely to produce false positives and made it much harder to be labelled an “asymptomatic case”.

If you're looking for a sensible, Occam's Razor-style explanation, this is likely it. As I said in a previous post, the numbers were massaged up by including everything including choking on bratwurst as a Covid death. Now, we remove all the false positives and over amped PCR testing cycles and the numbers, mirabile dictu , drop like a Roger Stone.

I, along with others here, wrote about false positives and over amped PCR tests as early as the May/June 2020 time-frame. The CDC discovers the obvious after Resident Joe Buyin is safely ensconced in the sunroom at the White House. Coincidence? If this was Ripley's Believe It or Not, it would deserve an entire wing for wax figures of the dummies who pushed this on us.

George Laiacona

Wearing a mask not only protects you but also your fellow Americans. If you are still not convinced that masking works, then shame on you! All Americans need to protect every one. This Trump Virus is serious stuff. If you don’t believe me check out the Pandemic of 1918.

Carlos Ponce

Again, George Laiacona's hatred of President Trump creeps into his post.

Wayne D Holt

Bubble Bursting #226: The Spanish Flu didn't kill all the people you apparently think it killed. According to a 2008 National Institute of Health paper, bacterial pneumonia, not flu, was the killer in a minimum of 92.7% of the autopsies of those who died of so-called “Spanish flu” between 1918 and 1919. Why is that distinction important?

The first cases were diagnosed not in Spain or among soldiers in Europe during WWI but at Ft. Riley, Kansas, where soldiers were given three doses of a bacterial meningitis vaccine. The vaccines were various dosages of an experimental vaccine serum derived from horses. The supervisory physician at the camp began to report the soldiers developed flu-like symptoms, including cough, vomiting and diarrhea, after receiving the vaccine. As you might imagine, these symptoms were a disaster for men living in barracks, traveling on trains to the Atlantic Coast, sailing to Europe and living and fighting in trenches. And so the fuse was lit for the worldwide killer we now erroneously call Spanish Flu. The symptoms were flu-like, the cause was bacteriological destruction of human immune systems.

Bacterial pneumonia was the real killer — and thousands of autopsies confirm this fact. Researchers looked at more than 9,000 autopsies, and “there were no negative (bacterial) lung culture results” according to the official records.

A sidebar for the conspiracy minded: the experimental vaccine that was the source of this disaster was cooked up in labs at the Rockefeller Institute, and used on soldiers as a ready pool of human test subjects. Today, we have Bill Gates pedaling his Vaccines for All Seasons approach with more limited but still deadly consequences among Third World populations that are today's guinea pigs.

The parallels are troubling. An experimental vaccine given en masse that goes haywire and creates world-wide deaths. Are today's mRNA vaccines its modern equivalent? We'll find out soon enough. And those who are clamoring to take the shots will find out first. Godspeed to you if you are so inclined.

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