COVID Update: Monday, May 31

Former Councilmember John Duran has been doing daily COVID updates on his Facebook page since March 2020. Many members of the community have found them helpful. They are republished here with his permission.

LA County Cases1,246,821(up from 1,246,619)
LA County Deaths24,421(up from 24,416)
LA Positivity Rate.4%(unchanged at .4%)
LA Hospitalizations216(up from 218)

175 new COVID Cases announced in LA County yesterday along with 4 additional deaths. Yes. Just 4. Positivity rate remains low at less than half of one percent. Hospitalizations drop once again to 258.

MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND

I do these daily updates every day since March of 2020. But given the current state of American affairs, I want to take a moment to consider the meaning of Memorial Day in 2021. It is more than just the kick off to summer. Pool parties, the beach and barbecues. It includes all those traditions. But there is more……..

Today we remember the Fallen. The men and women who sacrificed their lives for our Republic. Our Democratic Republic. Notice how those two words constitute strength when combined. Democracy meaning free and open elections where we each have the right to exercise our votes and participate in our own self governance. And Republic meaning within the construct of elected representatives, the Rule of Law, Institutions and revered Separation of Powers between Judicial, Legislative and Executive branches of government.

The idea that no one man is above the law. That we do not raise Kings or Princes into power. That we do not operate by mob rule. That we do not bend to tyrant or despot. That power does not rest in one person’s hands but in the will of the People. And by forever opposing King, Tyrant or Despot, we are able to secure blessings from our liberty: Freedom to think and speak. Freedom to practice religion or not practice religion. A Free Press. Due Process of Law and Justice. The reformist idea that all women and men are equal and free to choose their own concept of “the good life”.

That’s what women and men died for in Wars both in far away places and here on American soil. The reason for the battles were clear during the Revolutionary War that birthed the longest standing Democracy in history. The reason for the battles were clear during the Civil War when enslavement finally collapsed when good hearted people rose up and joined hands. The reason for the battles were clear when fascists tried to rule the world with evil at its core during the World Wars of the last century.

But as time went on, the reasons became murky as we found ourselves in the jungles of Viet Nam, Cambodia or the deserts of Iraq and Afghanistan. Now the argument shifted to protecting American interests in supposedly stemming the spread of communism or keeping the oil pipelines open for our economy.

But the women and men who showed up to defend the Nation weren’t engaged in the policy discussions of what was best for the Republic’s interests. They showed up for duty and honor. And so many thousands and thousands made the ultimate sacrifice even without knowing the reasons why. They dressed up and suited up and showed up anyways.

Their sacrifice should not be in vain. On this Memorial Day and every day, I recommit to the principles they made sacrifice for – Democracy, Liberty and Equality. They did not do it for General Washington or President Lincoln or President Roosevelt or any other White House servant. May we never flirt with authoritarianism. May we never cede our individual power over to one tyrant or despot. May we never allow fear to thwart reason.

Thank you for your service and sacrifice. For Democracy. For free and open elections to choose our entrusted servants. For the Rule of Law that no man is outside its Justice. For the continuing evolution of equality in each generation. A joyous and solemn Memorial Day to Each of You.

Now, 76 degrees and Sunny in LA Today. Enjoy your poolside chatter with those you find dear to you ……

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