Can we trust  our government?

It seems to me that in the last decade, people have been losing any trust they ever had in our government. Mind you, this was happening long before COVID whirled over from China and knocked the breath out of us - literally, for many. I don’t really know when this country started to shift along party lines but shift it did. Now lines in the sand of this great nation exist from sea to shining sea. “If you disagree with me, you’re wrong,” shriek both parties.

The Democrats scream that everything is Trump’s fault. The Republicans counter that Biden is an old, incompetent man being led straight to perdition by inept Democrats. The big question is whether they actually believe what they are saying or if they are deliberately lying. Consider with me the following situation.

Let me tell you a bit about a course currently being offered by the Rural Domestic Preparedness Consortium (RDPC), which is directly linked to FEMA and Homeland Security. You can find all this information and more at https://ruraltraining.org/course/mgt-433/. It is described as an eight-hour course designed to teach people to begin planning for situations that require isolation and quarantine of a big portion of a local, rural population. Public and private-sector safety personnel, emergency managers, community policy makers, and public health officials can acquire the knowledge to begin planning. This information is essential to minimizing the negative impacts to the community at risk, but also to minimizing the long-term negative economic and health effects on the American public in general. Led by The Center for Rural Development, the Consortium is made up of academic members that possess extensive experience and specific capabilities in developing and delivering homeland security curriculum to rural emergency responders.

RDPC’s mission focuses on positioning rural and tribal communities to prepare for, prevent, respond, and recover from disasters through training. Since the beginning in 2004 when Congress started the group, RDPC has worked to develop and deliver training to communities throughout the United States. While Americans tend to have an idealized image of rural America, a common definition for “rural” is difficult to find and is one of the most popular questions asked of RDPC. Finally, they defined a rural community as “any location with a population of less than 50,000 and with a population density of less than 1,000 persons per square mile.”

RDPC interprets the phrase, “any location,” as applying to tribes, cities, towns, villages, parishes, communities, and counties, which ensures areas are not excluded unduly. For example, a city or township within an urban county fits the “rural” definition.

Recently, July 15 to be exact, a woman posted a video that said the course was really a guise to quarantine all the unvaccinated people in the USA. She refuses to send her son to public school for fear that the government will take him away from her. Her video posted on TikTok asks if the Department of Homeland Security has a training program for mass quarantine for people who have not been vaccinated with COVID-19? At the time of publication, this video had over 120,000 likes and over 5,000 comments.

VERIFY says no, there’s no such plan and no such program, but the video has gone viral.

It seems that we must consider several things: 1. Who trusts VERIFY? 2. If the video is false, why can’t I find it and decide for myself? 3. Social media is a good thing, right? 4. Who exactly is this mysterious woman anyway? 5. Our government wouldn’t do such a thing, right? 6. Whom can we trust?

Now if you are expecting me to answer those questions, sorry. I can’t. I trust a few individuals that I know extremely well. They have proved themselves over the years. When they tell me something, I know it’s the truth. Now my government is a different story. No matter which side of the political line the person in power dances on, he tends to let lies slide from his lips like honey from the comb and doesn’t even try very hard to disguise them. Social media can be a good thing. I love seeing pictures of my former students’ cute babies. I don’t like seeing the political drivel. That’s the best I can do to answer my own questions. Give it a grade of D-.

I miss you, Sonia, but I remember your famous advice, “Don’t trust anybody!” That’s good advice, but I say try to think for yourself. In the end, that’s the one you face in the mirror every night. Then you answer those questions.