Governor Greg Abbott Lifts 'Stay-at-Home' Order for Texas

Tom Fox/The Dallas Morning News via AP, Pool

In what may be a slow slide towards sanity for the entire nation, Texas Governor Greg Abbott has announced that the bizarre, neo-fascist ‘stay-at-home’ orders in effect in Texas (not singling Texas out because the nation is rife with bizarre neo-fascist orders that have zero to do with anyone’s health or safety and everything to do with curtailing your rights just ’cause) will terminate on April 30.

 

Gov. Greg Abbott on Monday said his statewide stay-at-home order on coronavirus will expire on Thursday as scheduled, while Texas malls, stores, restaurants, movie theaters and restaurants may open the next day — with 25% occupancy.

Barber shops, hair salons, gyms, massage establishments, tattoo parlors, video arcades and bowling alleys must wait until mid-May at the earliest to reopen, he said.

Outdoor sports such as golf and tennis may resume with no more than four participants in a match, and they must observe social distancing guidelines, he said.

Businesses will be free to choose not to open, and in less populated counties with five or fewer confirmed cases, they will be able to open at 50% capacity, he said.

Museums and public libraries can reopen, again with the 25% capacity limitation. However, a city doesn’t have to let them do so, Abbott said. And in shopping malls, he said, food courts, play areas and interactive displays and settings must remain closed, he said.

The Republican governor “strongly” recommended that Texans wear masks while in public. However, he said local requirements imposed by Democratic-controlled commissioners courts in Dallas and Harris counties — as well as elsewhere — are superseded by his new orders. No one can be fined by a locality for not wearing a facial covering, he said.

This is a start and perhaps as best as one could expect in a political climate where he is sure to be blamed for every Wuhan death that occurs after Friday. It is still, I would contend, a set of restrictions utterly unsupported by science or by common sense. The overall death rate in the US continues to decline. As we test more people it is becoming very obvious that Wuhan virus infects a crap-ton of people, most of whom never even know they are sick. Switzerland has found that children do not carry a sufficient viral load to pass on the infection so there is literally zero reason to keep schools closed.

The good news is that you know everyone will be pushing the envelope and by forbidding fascists in Austin and Dallas and Houston from imposing their own orders, he’s basically set off the facemask equivalent of the Oklahoma Land Rush as businesses do everything they can to get running again before the competitors in other gauleiter-ridden states come out from under their beds.

Hopefully, though, Texas will push a lot of other states off the bubble and get the country moving again and put this shameful episode of national gutlessness behind us.