State of emergency is not justified: COVID-19 is not an epidemic in Florida



On Tuesday, Governor DeSantis took a quick break from his 2024 presidential campaign to issue Executive Order 20-166, extending the state of emergency by 60 days (the maximum allowed by law). As with his previous orders, there is no mention of any objective criteria to signal the end of the state of emergency. That’s by design because the more we learn about COVID-19, the more clear it becomes that it does not satisfy the requirements for a public health emergency, making DeSantis’s order illegitimate.

The latest CDC Weekly Counts of Deaths by State and Select Causes (2019-2020) was updated on July 10 to cover the first 26 weeks of 2020. COVID-19 deaths account for only 2.8% of all deaths in Florida (7.4% in the U.S.). The CDC’s threshold for declaring an epidemic is when 7.2% of all deaths are cause by a particular illness. COVID-19 did not cross that threshold in Florida in any week this year.

Looking at the Florida Department of Health’s line data (July 10 update), the case fatality rate for people under 65 is 0.34%; under 55 it’s 0.17%. For comparison, the average infection fatality rate for seasonal flu is 0.14% for all ages. (It ranged from 0.1% to 0.18% for 2010-2018.)

In Florida, people over 75 make up less than 10% of the population and account for 63% of COVID-19 deaths. Over twice as many people over 85 have died from COVID-19 than people under 65. That’s comparing a group that makes up less than 3% of the state’s population (85+) to the one that makes up nearly 80% (< 65). There is no reason to shut down businesses or limit the interactions of the vast majority of people, who have very little to fear from COVID-19.

Besides, the number of COVID-19 deaths is highly exaggerated since deaths with COVID-19 are counted as deaths from COVID-19. Buried in a comorbidities paragraph on a weekly update page, the CDC admits that for deaths involving COVID-19, only 7% had COVID-19 listed as the only cause. Other COVID-19-related deaths had an average of “2.5 additional conditions or causes per death.” Plus every serology study shows that the number of infections greatly exceeds the number of cases, so the infection fatality rate for COVID-19 is well below seasonal flu for a vast majority of the population.

Despite all this data, Governor DeSantis extended the emergency order, allowing him and 67 mini-monarchs to effectively rule by fiat, destroying the economy and creating “retail friction.” Alachua County continues a ridiculous mask order that has no basis in science. If Alachua County’s strict policies worked, why does the county have more cases than Marion County, which has roughly 100k more people? Don’t hold your breath waiting for the county commissioners to admit they were wrong or rescind their oppressive orders. (The graph uses FDOH line data; population data is from Census for FL, Alachua, and Marion.)

The restrictions being imposed go beyond CDC guidance, which says the only reason for concern is if you have close, sustained contact (< 6 feet for 15+ minutes). That doesn’t happen at the grocery store, and the rule “is irrespective of whether the person with COVID-19 or the contact was wearing a cloth face covering or whether the contact was wearing respiratory personal protective equipment (PPE)” (emphasis added). Masks do not matter, and we do not need to fear casual contact with our neighbors while running errands. Local officials continue to mislead the public to maintain a perpetual state of terror.

There is no way COVID-19 qualifies as one of the “communicable diseases that have significant morbidity or mortality and present a severe danger to public health,” as required by FL statute 381.00315 (Public health advisories; public health emergencies; isolation and quarantines). The governor’s declaration of a state of emergency is illegitimate, as are any restrictions on businesses and individuals under the emergency order. (His powers over civilians under Statute 252.36 are essentially limited to ordering evacuations and keeping people away from emergency responders.)

But don’t expect any apologies from DeSantis or the other petty tyrants who refuse to acknowledge anything that counters their narrative. They ignore the continually-dropping case fatality rate, choosing to emphasize the surge in cases (caused by a surge in testing, especially of young people, who couldn’t get tested until recently) and inflated positive test rates (ignoring negative test results) to justify the state of emergency.

The state of emergency ensures that our elected representatives have no say. Under Florida statutes, only three people have the power to reign in DeSantis. The public health emergency statute grants the State Health Officer (Surgeon General Scott Rivkees) the power to end the state of emergency. Statute 252.36, paragraph (2), allows the legislature to end it, but that would require House Speaker Jose Oliva (R, District 110 in Miami-Dade County) or Senate President Bill Galvano (R, District 21 in Hillsborough & Manatee Counties) to actually convene the legislature.

Unfortunately, all these people play for “Team R” and tribalism rules the day, so they refuse to go against a rogue Republican governor. Sadly, even the opposition party doesn’t stand up to the governor because they don’t think he’s going far enough with the tyranny. They want him to destroy the economy to influence the November elections.

Floridians need to realize that COVID-19 was politicized about 30 seconds after it was discovered. Governments at all levels have ignored the data and set aside decades of established policies for handling viruses in order to implement desired policies with no accountability. They’ve been making (and changing) decisions on a whim to accomplish their own political ends and should not have the presumption of benevolent intent.

Every emergency order (masks, occupancy limits, closure of businesses and schools, etc.) is based on the premise that we are dealing with a catastrophically-deadly illness, and it’s simply not true. Once we allow never-ending emergency orders (remember “15 days to stop the spread”? That was 4 months ago) for a virus with an infection fatality rate well under 0.2%, what will be the next excuse to shut everything down?

Floridians need to defy these unlawful orders and put continuous pressure on DeSantis, Rivkees, Watson, Oliva, Galvano, Keith Perry, Chuck Clemons, and Clovis Watson to end the farce. We never voted for DeSantis as the lawmaker-in-chief of Florida, and we certainly didn’t elect Commissioner Hutchinson to single-handedly make laws for Alachua County. We have a representative government with checks and balances for a reason, and it’s time to go back to that system. The state of emergency has provided cover to petty local tyrants for too long; it needs to end now.

  • Good article. Thanks for pointing out that covid19 is actually no worse than the seasonal flu.

    What’s it really all about? What’s the endgame? Who is behind the plandemic & why? It’s definitely
    Behavior modification and control (body, mind, & spirit).—Is the whole covid thing a Scam to create a centralized world government?

    Imagine a jigsaw puzzle of the planet earth of a one world government that’s
    Communist (new world order)…Gainesville, Alachua county, Florida, the United States, all the countries in the world…
    They’re all pieces in the puzzle.—the communists have infiltrated every level of government…and, putting all the little pieces together is what the United Nations wants to do.
    Conspiracy theory? No. Some people are enlightened and can
    Think for themselves…the more information and ability
    To critical think, the more obvious it becomes.

    Should we have shutdown the economy for covid? No,
    It made things a zillion times worse and gave the
    “Little napoleons” of local, county, & state governments tyrannical power to take our liberty & freedom away.

    Of course we know the mask wearing thing is crap…it’s a
    Political statement! The mask
    Thing has turned into “the flag of compliance” to communism. The mob wants to take over the world…
    they want to destroy the United States and redistribute the
    Wealth…What about social distancing? They don’t want freedom of Assembly….

    • Who knew a World Communist Conspiracy controls the Deep State? The stuff I learn here from the loyal cult followers of Brother John Birch. Amazing. Keep spreading this information.

  • Thanks to Len Cabrerra for this concise analysis. Our local state and federal representatives now have a duty to petition the governor for immediate recall of the emergency order.

  • Why is DeSantis Working for Fauci, Bill Gates, Zionist Noahide Laws, The United Nations, China, The Rockefellers, The City of London, The Vatican, The World Economic Forum and the Satanic Masonic Cult?

    • Why? Because the mob is perpetuating the “big lie” to
      exert its power…the general public is very ignorant…
      Ignoramuses are saying “people are dying”…— I always
      Reply back, “ tell me about all these dying people”…

      We went along with the covid charade at first to flatten the curve just
      In case…the whole thing turned out to be a nothingburger.
      Most dumbdumbs are concerned about getting their
      Next stimulus check. It’s a United Nations plan for a one
      World government.

      I don’t think the United States of America and the silent
      Majority will put up for it for much longer…we haven’t yet
      “Begun to fight”… I know that I will be a minuteman when
      The call to protect freedom, liberty, and the constitution is
      Made…when will that happen? Definitely when you start
      Seeing blue helmets around America…Blue helmets means
      A takeover and a call to action!

  • Hahah you guys are some right wing trash and as a Republican it hurts me to say that. Funny anyone with access to a computer can write some false narratives and put others in danger. Best wishes, feel free to catch COVID and let us know how sick you get.

  • For once I agree with Len. DeSantis is a horrible governor. But that is no surprise and to be expected, because DeSantis is a REPUBLICAN and Republicans cannot govern and should never be elected to anything. When you elect a fascist Republican as governor, you have no right to bytch that he runs the state like a fascist Republican. It is what Republicans DO.

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