The use of fear to control the population has been utilized many times in the history of the United States. Fear of the Native Americans led to the Trail of Tears as Andrew Jackson’s genocidal policies against the tribes of North America were accepted by the citizens. Fear of another Japanese attack led to the internment of Japanese Americans under Franklin Roosevelt’s executive order and the citizens saw this as being prudent. Fear of Communism led to the Red Scare of the 1950s as the McCarthy hearings ruined the lives of many people, and the citizens accepted it as protecting our country.

So, too, is the fear of getting sick leading many in the country to accept government restrictions of our movement, ordering many businesses to remain closed, and forcing millions of people out of work.

However, it is people’s fear during elections which has brought this all about.

For the last three decades, candidates have won elections because the voting population feared the alternative of the two-party system rather than for the best candidate. Even when there are better qualified third-party, fourth-party, or independent candidates, a majority of voters continue voting for the person they feel is most likely to defeat the one they don’t want. This mentality is the reason we find ourselves in the current situation we are now.

I was the U.S Congressional candidate in 2018 for this congressional district, and I strongly believe that we should have put the numbers into perspective before making any decisions out of fear, because fear is what is destroying this country.

Some will insist that COVID-19 has us in this situation now, but in reality, it still remains a disease with an insignificant impact on the population.

The population of Guadalupe County is 166,847. Eighty residents are confirmed with COVID-19 and 0 fatalities as of May 11, 2020. Bexar County has a population of about 2 million, with 1,613 residents COVID-19 positive and 48 fatalities as of May 11, 2020.

Guadalupe County has 0.04% of the population with COVID-19 and a 100% chance of survival. Bexar County, with 12 times the population, has 0.08% of the population with COVID-19 and a 99.998% chance of survival as of May 11, 2020.

Some people will say that “one death is one too many,” but in reality, every disease will claim some lives. Even the common cold and seasonal allergies claim lives every year. This mentality, noble as it is, is unrealistic.

What our elected leaders should have done was put the numbers of cases and deaths into perspective rather than blindly follow the one-sided reports from the mainstream media.

A medical doctor is a member of the Libertarian Party of Guadalupe County. Dr. Julian Mardock states that the quarantine should have only applied to those who were sick or at high risk of dying from the disease. The rest should practice social distancing and take whatever personal protection they felt necessary but that shutting down businesses and putting millions out of work was unnecessary.

This seems logical but fear still grips many people as they feel that THEY are one of those at high risk of dying when they are not. They then subscribe to the notion that the quarantine should remain in place.

Personally, I don’t think millions of people should lose their livelihood or a small business they invested their life savings in just so I can have the illusion of being safe.

Anthony Cristo is a high school English teacher in San Antonio, husband and Libertarian candidate for U.S. Congress in district 34 of Texas.

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