Stand up, get out, defy this illegal, unconstitutional lockdown of our country, our states and our lives.

From the beginning, I did not believe the COVID-19 story as it was presented to us via the mainstream media. The fear, anxiety and stress that has been broadcast 24 hours a day has torn this country apart.

In less than three weeks we gave up, without a word said, many of the freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States.

Our leaders and our politicians have divided this country, turned state against state, neighbor against neighbor, friend against friend.

They have taken away our ability to work, to feed our families, visit our relatives in nursing homes, worship in our churches and the right to assemble as we want.

They have taken away our pride in being a productive part of society and seek to put an end to our social lives and conduct ourselves in a manner in which they see fit.

As Americans we are unique in that we have a history of defeating outside forces that would attempt to threaten our freedoms, our way of life, our hopes, our dreams for our children and grandchildren and future generations.

Now the threat is from within. Our government has become that force and we must defeat its attempt at total control of our ability to pursue life, liberty and happiness.

If we do not defy the heavy-handed restrictions placed upon us, in the name of our own safety and security, how will we explain our inaction to those who we hope and dream for.

We have allowed basically a few dozen individuals to determine our fate for a generation.

The World Health Organization, the National Institute of Health and the federal Centers for Disease Control, along with a handful of biomedical and infectious disease doctors, are largely responsible for what this nation is going through today.

These groups with very little real world intelligence have relied upon artificial intelligence and their own agendas to frighten the world over this. Not one model for middle America has been right. Aside from pandemic surges seen in the New York City metro area and perhaps New Orleans, very little of what these groups have predicted has been accurate, yet our government is making policies based on these outrageous predictions and speculations.

From the beginning the numbers didn’t add up. Nearly two months since the WHO declared a worldwide pandemic, the numbers still don’t. These so-called experts are making it up as they go, adding layers of fear at every press conference.

They use words like social distancing, contact tracing and the “new normal,” all the while pushing the agenda that this may take years before you can get together and socialize as you did only a month ago.

This country, this economy, can and must reopen now. A phased reopening as proposed by the government will not work. It will further divide this country as some states go to work while others are locked down.

All small businesses, of which more than 50% of our economy is comprised of, sustain life, provide jobs, feed families and create relationships within our communities. If this lockdown continues much longer we will all see just how essential these businesses were to our communities. They are the lifeblood of our nation, the heart that supplies life-sustaining jobs, food, money, a sense of pride and purpose.

Without these businesses our society as we know it will collapse.

We cannot continue to rely on faulty medical advice by so-called experts who purport to know what is best for 330 million people and the largest economy in the world.

The government cannot and will not take care of you forever. It is up to each individual to take care of themselves and their families.

We are a highly intelligent society, capable of independent thinking. We are not children; we must refuse to be treated like children. We are responsible. We know how to take care of our needy and our sick. These overreaching directives and regulations are an insult to the citizens of this nation, as if we had no common sense at all.

The choices are always the same in difficult situations. Number 1, you can complain and do nothing or, Number 2, you question authority, ask the hard questions, get answers and do something.

We will be held accountable by our loved ones if we choose the former.

(Don Cummins lives in Bradford.)

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