Politics

American Conservatives Have Just Discovered Australia’s Strict Lockdown Measures

Thanks for your concern, but we're doing fine

lockdown melbourne

Anyone wondering what it might have been like to witness the fall of Rome might have been keeping a trained eye on America recently.

Already a laughing stock of the world after appointing a giant man-baby as their President, they’ve decided to compound that by treating a global pandemic with what appears to be an absurd amount of complacency.

On Saturday, for example, Florida decided it was a great idea to reopen Disney World, attempting to entice crowds with a dystopian-looking video of masked staff members waving at the camera.

A day later Florida smashed the national record for the largest single-day increase in cases since the pandemic began. 15,300 new cases were reported on Sunday in the southeastern state alone.

But sure, rollercoasters, amiright?

Australia, by comparison, enforced extremely strict restrictions to try and stop the spread of the deadly virus — a move that is apparently inconceivable to some conservative Americans.

Enter DeAnna Lorraine, a failed Republican congressional candidate from California who unsuccessfully ran against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

She’s apparently just clocked on to the news that Melbourne has been sent back into lockdown after the number of Victorian cases exploded (well, by Aussie standards).

DeAnna appears absolutely outraged on our behalf, tweeting, “This is literally Prison. Total enslavement”.

“Australians aren’t allowed to even leave their own homes for 6 plus weeks? Police put a “ring of steel” around the city, with “checkpoints anytime anywhere” to enforce the measures? SICK. Fight this people!” she wrote.

Sick might be the right word under the circumstances, but probably not in the way she means it.

Now, in America restrictions have been different from state to state, and sometimes from county to county. Some — looking at you Nebraska, Arkansas, Iowa and the Dakotas – never even issued stay-at-home orders, preferring to rely on other restrictions like closing businesses and limiting gatherings.

The virus is still spreading rapidly in the country where 3.37 million people have already been infected, but that hasn’t stopped them from starting to ease what restrictions they did put in place to try.

Meanwhile President Trump has been encouraging crowds of people to gather for campaign rallies.

By comparison, Australia has had incredibly strict lockdown measures. All citizens were ordered to stay home way back in mid-March (except for essential reasons) and indoor gatherings of more than 100 people were banned. That was quickly limited again to 10 people, and then two.

Melbourne is so far the only place in Australia to be forced into a second lockdown.

People there are allowed to go outside for four essential reasons, including to exercise and buy essential items, and police have set up checkpoints to avoid people from the hot zones from possibly spreading the infection to other parts of the state.

Australia has recorded 108 coronavirus-related deaths since the pandemic began. The United States has recorded 137,000.

Obviously with these things you need to take into account population size — but still, just over one percent of Australians who have contracted the virus have died. In America, that number is four percent.

So, like … there may be something to our approach?

It’s true that residents inside nine public housing blocks were temporarily banned from leaving their homes for any reason and were treated appallingly — but their plight didn’t rate a mention.

Eight of the nine towers have since been moved to Stage 3 restrictions so they too can do their own groceries and leave their apartment for exercise. The ninth tower block has been forced into a 14 day police-enforced quarantine, after 53 cases were identified.

Today Melbourne recorded 177 new cases, the first time since Thursday that the number of new infections has dropped below 200.