Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis shared a video on Twitter on Wednesday to declare an end to the pandemic theater for this state, saying, “There is no place in Florida for COVID theater.”
DeSantis shared the words alongside a video clip from a panel he spoke at on Monday with Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo and other medical experts to close the curtain on coronavirus restrictions.
There is no place in Florida for COVID theater.
These experts agree – no masking, no mandates and no medical censorship. pic.twitter.com/Vx27FxSCNj
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) March 9, 2022
“Over the past two years, the data has shown us what works and what doesn’t work. It is long past time to stop the COVID Theater,” DeSantis said.
“In Florida, we told the truth, we let the data drive our response, and we let Floridians make decisions for themselves and their children. As a result, Florida is in a better spot than states who used fear mongering and mandates,” he added.
Ladapo also emphasized the need to “get back to living.”
“Under the leadership of Governor DeSantis, Florida has continued to stay ahead of the federal government by following sound science – not coercion,” Ladapo said in a statement regarding the event. “Today, we were able to bring doctors from around the world to discuss COVID-19 and the lack of data to support mandates. Scientific debate takes place in a public forum – it is not hidden in federal bureaucracy. We need to get back to living – not hiding in fear.”
Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nuñez noted DeSantis has “led the nation” in responding to COVID-19.
“It was Governor DeSantis who led the nation prioritizing seniors, followed the data for businesses to remain open, and children to attend school in person, recognizing how little their risk was,” Nuñez said. “While the Biden Administration criticizes our response to COVID-19, Florida remains to be the envy of the nation.”
Among the other medical professionals to address the issue was Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Health Policy, Stanford University Medical School.
“The lockdowns were an enormous catastrophic mistake that should never be repeated,” Bhattacharya said in the statement.
“When we think about lockdowns, we should recoil with horror because the policies we followed have violated not just medical ethics, but also crushed the ability for scientists to discuss openly with each other facts and evidence. It’s taken a great amount of effort and willingness to face abuse in order for scientists to speak up and many have been silenced. I think [we need] the restoration of the freedom for scientists to discuss with one another openly what the evidence actually says without fear of repression that we’ve seen during the pandemic in order to support the lockdowns. I think that the proper place of science in society needs to be restored so that scientists can advise, but not dictate policy,” he added.
Dr. Jill Ackerman, M.D., Advent Health Shawnee Mission, also expressed her thoughts concerning the impact of the pandemic on children.
“I’m just pleased to see the shift that we could now acknowledge that perhaps our children are not as resilient as we most often heard that they were,” Ackerman said.
“I hope that [with] this recognition we can move forward and prevent this from occurring in the future and recognize schools are essential. We really left that core principle in the dust over the past two years,” she added.