Tuesday saw the state’s largest one-day rise in coronavirus-related deaths.
With yesterday’s report of 32, a total of 342 Mississippians have lost their lives to COVID-19. The confirmation of 330 new cases – the 2nd largest one-day rise – brings the state’s total number of cases up to 8,207.
Governor Tate Reeves delivered a heartfelt message this morning which clearly shows the struggle between efforts to keep Mississippians safe and the call to reopen the state’s economy.
There is a reason that we have not thrown the state back open wide. I hear the calls for that every day. It’s where my instinct goes when I see the economic disaster unfolding in front of us. But I can’t do it in good conscience. I want this to be over, but I can’t make it go away. Balance is the key.
Every effort to re-open sectors of our economy has been done because we believe it is safe to make those activities legal. Not everything legal is wise for you and your family. You still have to make good decisions. There is no government replacement for your personal responsibility and wisdom.
Please take our warnings seriously. Please do not give up.
I have a real fear that I’ve been trying to communicate from the beginning. I hope people are listening. Across the country, these social distancing measures have been like strict diets. People can’t sustain them for a long time. And when they start to reach a breaking point, they go right for the chocolate cake. They give up on the mission, rather than ease up on the measures. Whatever we do has to be sustainable, or it will do more harm than good.
That’s why we are working to give people some semblance of normalcy. I can’t have our people lose morale and give up, or we will see things get far worse no matter what I order.
Please do not give up. We need you to stay smart. We need you to stay strong. You are needed.
I’m tired of all of this too. I’m ready to get back to life as normal. Neither you or I can snap our fingers and make it so. What we can do is try to work together to help make things better. Make them a little safer. Make them a little more normal with kindness for your neighbors.
You’ve been doing that. I see it. We all see it. Mississippians are helping Mississippians. It brings me joy, in a dark time, to hear your stories of compassion and resilience.
I really believe that we are containing this as much as we possibly can. Do not mistake my hope and pride in the people of Mississippi for a belief that this cannot get worse. Do not confuse my belief that our strategy is strong with the notion that COVID-19 cannot kill your loved ones.
I trust you. I trust that you are doing the right thing in the face of tremendous pressure. That’s why this has not been worse to this point.
I’m not lecturing or telling you what to do. I’m asking you, as a fellow Mississippian and American, please do not give up or give in. Stay in the fight. Take care of one another. Please continue to pray—I believe in the power of prayer.
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