To the editor:

I wish to express appreciation for all the outstanding and courageous work that has been and continues to be performed by all the first responders. It has been a long few months and the actions of our local and state politicians were aggressive in the early days, closing all non-essential businesses.

A segment of the economy was open -- supermarkets, pharmacies, anyone selling foods, as well as Home Depot-type stores. However, many of the small businesses in our city and state have been prevented from opening and people have lost jobs. Granted, there was no road map for politicians to follow, nor do many of them have any private-sector business experience to fall back on.

What was encouraging was how fast businesses that were permitted to be open responded with innovation to keep their workers and customers safe. They developed solutions like Lexan barriers to protect their workers and create distance. Supermarkets created one-way aisles, marked the floors, and created early hours for those at risk. Every lesson learned was shared and built upon. Factories reorganized floor space, issued masks, checked workers in every morning. Companies used 3D printers to make masks of all sorts. We trusted these businesses to do right and they did.

The point I am making is its time to open the doors of all businesses and trust them and the public. At issue here is freedom. I read that the First Amendment is at the core of the Bill of Rights. Freedom is not a right given by government, but rather it is a natural right, therefore it cannot be taken away or abused by government under any condition.

Our politicians were not elected to take away freedom. I ask them now to trust people to do what is right and trust businesses to protect their workers and customers. Trust the religious leaders to open their churches properly, trust the barbershops and salons owner to create the safe environment. Trust the restaurant owners to do it right. Time for the heavy foot of local and state government to be lifted. They did their job. Now trust people or we all risk the slow death of freedom!

Jim Modugno



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