Admiral Giroir Slams Bans On Outdoor Dining As Without Scientific Basis

Just before I was interviewed today on Fox about ongoing challenges to shutdown orders, Admiral Brett Giroir was interviewed and gave what must have been welcomed views on the science behind pandemic orders. A hearing is scheduled tomorrow in one of the challenges by businesses in California to the lockdown ordered by Governor Gavin Newsom.  Giroir however stated that there was no evidence or science supporting the type of categorical lockdown in states like California, particularly bans on outdoor dining. The statement presents a potential conflict with Dr. Anthony Fauci. It certainly contradicts the common narrative in the media and the recent election. Giroir is a widely respected public health expert who has reenforced a calm and science-based approach to the White House Coronavirus Task Force.

As I discussed, courts have been applying greater scrutiny to these pandemic orders. The initial deference afforded to pandemic order tends to wane with time. The first such shift came predictably with challenges based on the contravention of constitutional rights, particularly the free exercise of religion under the First Amendment. Such challenges have the advantage of the higher standard of strict scrutiny.

Now, however, there are renewed challenges for businesses under the lower standard of the rational basis test. This is due to the contradiction of some orders with known science or data on transmission rates and sources. For example, through the election, Democrats suggested that President Donald Trump was effectively trying to kill children by pushing to reopen schools, including Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin. Rubin has previously shown a disregard of the factual foundation for her allegations. Yet, Democrats have maintained until recently that schools must be closed due to the high risk of transmission despite growing scientific evidence to the contrary.  Ads running before the election cited Dr. Fauci in saying that opening schools was putting the lives of children at risk for political reasons:

Recently, Mayor diBlasio reversed his order to close New York schools after criticism over the lack of scientific support for the policy. Indeed, it contradicts the long-standing findings of health organizations that young children show an exceptionally low risk for contracting or passing Covid-19.  There are also studies showing the high cost of lockdown from massive economic losses to spikes in suicide to increasing medical (non-Covid-19) emergencies.

Thankfully, courts tend to be more attentive to the factual foundation of their own conclusions.  At most, they will find a mixed scientific record supporting the categorical bans.

Notably, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said publicly that he supported the new lockdowns in California. However, Giroir referenced Fauci and the other Task Force members in saying that they have not seen “any data that says you need to shutdown outdoor dining or outdoor bars.” He said that the science does not support such categorical lockdowns, explaining

“We do, in a surge place, need to limit indoor dining, indoor bars, but you don’t have to close schools, you don’t have to close universities, you don’t have to close your major industries . . . The science does not support limiting indoor dining and bars…It’s time to nuance. This is not March or April. This is December. We know what the science says, we know there are countermeasures that are effective…

…Whatever the expression is, throwing the baby out with the bathwater, I think we could be causing a lot more harm by overly restrictive recommendations that are not supported by the science,” he said. “What I am saying is the evidence clearly does not support limitations on things like outdoor dining particularly that are spaced, outdoor bars — the evidence just isn’t there. . . Shutting down completely, particularly if you don’t have evidence, can be counterproductive.”

That is likely to be featured prominently in these increasing challenges to blanket shutdown orders.  State and local officials will still be afforded deference but the science on some of these limitations can now be challenged. The best bet for governors is still the rational basis test which ordinarily presents an easy standard to satisfy. However, the call “follow the science” may not be a clearly supportive in some of these cases. There now appears to be significant science-based arguments that can be raised in opposing to sweeping lockdowns. If a court is presented with science on both sides, the advantage still rests with the states and their pandemic orders. They will have to offer a rational basis for why such lockdowns are needed. That might include reducing the travel of parents with their children to schools and the need for significant numbers of adults to support school operations, including obviously the teachers.  In such a balancing, statements by experts like Admiral Giroir will likely to be raised and considered by courts.

 

176 thoughts on “Admiral Giroir Slams Bans On Outdoor Dining As Without Scientific Basis”

  1. Men genetically express the protein ACE2 in higher concentrations compared to women. This likely explains, androgens aside, the higher infectivity and mortality rates in men. For those men that live, they face sexual impotence. This might explain why hypertension is the number one comorbidity associated with COVID-19, followed by obesity where ACE2 is highly expressed in Adipose Tissue….fat

    Again, natural selection is in play.

    https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmed.2020.589060/full

    Molecular Mechanisms Lead to Sex-Specific COVID-19 Prognosis and Targeted Therapies

    Clinical and epidemiological studies have identified male sex as an important risk factor for COVID-19 clinical outcomes and mortality.

    Males and Females Differentially Express ACE2 Leading to Different COVID-19 Outcomes

    Androgens play a role in the RAS by promoting the expression of angiotensinogen and increases the plasma activity of renin (36). In contrast, estrogen downregulates the expression of AT1R, ACE, and decreases the plasma activity of renin (37). Besides modulating ACE activity, estrogen upregulates the expression of ACE2, AT2R, and the mitochondrial assembly receptor (Mas R) (19). This is a critical difference in the regulation of the RAS by androgen and estrogen. The activation of the ACE2 and AT1R axis by androgen leads to inflammation, hypertension, vasoconstriction, fibrosis, and cell proliferation

    Males express more ACE and ACE2 and thus, SARS-CoV-2 binding to ACE2 and its subsequent internalization removing this critical blood pressure reducing mechanism (48). The balance of ACE/ACE2 is toward ACE2 in females, and this relative difference in expression may convey protection by reducing blood pressure (49). These sex-differences in ACE2 are likely contributing to sex differences observed in COVID-19-related infection, morbidity, and mortality (48, 49). Female-specific immune response and ACE2 regulation also work together to maintain both immune function and blood pressure homeostasis (50).

    Which gives us the following….

    Addressing male sexual and reproductive health in the wake of COVID-19 outbreak
    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40618-020-01350-1

    1. “For those men that live, they face sexual impotence.”

      Estovir, the most significant illness produced by Covid is to older and sick people. They are not generally the ones relied on to produce future generations. Do you have any idea of the impact Covid has on reproduction? I assume it is not very significant but would like to know if you feel otherwise.

  2. Pingback: ‘Just Say No’
  3. Jonathan: You say Admiral Brett Giroir “is a widely respected public health expert who has re-enforced a calm and science-based approach to the White House Coronavirus Task Force”. You must be kidding. Like Dr. Scott Atlas, Trump put Giroir on the Task Force to try to counter Dr. Fauci’s sober and fact based recommendations on fighting Covid. Atlas was recruited by Trump after Atlas also appeared on FoxNews opposing expanded testing, the wearing of face masks and social distancing. Atlas pushed fringe Covid theories not supported by most medical experts. While on the Task Force Atlas fought with Dr. Fauci. That was music to Trump’s ears!

    From the beginning of the crisis Trump has fought with state governors over pandemic restrictions. He found an ally in Atlas and now in Admiral Giroir. Now that Trump is MIA in addressing Covid (he’s preoccupied in trying to overturn a legitimate election) Giroir has taken up the mantle in fighting state pandemic restrictions. In the FoxNews interview Giroir criticized California’s Governor Newsom’s stay-at-home order, a move the Governor made because ICU hospital bed capacity dropped to 15%–a prudent move that Dr. Fauci has supported. Giroir says the “science” does not support Newsom’s order and the Admiral supports other “countermeasures”. What “science” or “countermeasures” does Giroir rely upon? He doesn’t say. Girior thinks we have learned much more about the spread of Covid since March and April. Have we? At the end of April there were 225,000 Covid cases and 5,345 deaths. Today there are 15,607,655 infections and 293,637 Covid deaths. Covid is still out of control, even in California, and that is what prompted Governor Newsom’s order. Since Thanksgiving, when millions were traveling, there has been a spike in caronavirus cases. Girior should know that traveling around the countryside, dining indoors or outdoors, attending Trump rallies or White House festivities are all “super-spreader” events. They should be avoided. But Girior’s role seems to be to repeat Trump’s unfounded and dangerous myths about Covid.

    I think it’s dangerous for you to argue that Admiral Girior is the “expert” the courts should look to in considering limits to state pandemic lockdowns and other restrictions. Courts should follow the science not the fringe theories of Dr. Atlas or now the unfounded arguments of Admiral Girior. Fortunately, President-elect Biden has chosen Dr. Fauci as his chief medical expert on Covid. Fauci is the medical expert we should listen to in our efforts to get Covid under control–not Trump loyalists like Admiral Girior.

  4. Trump voters who have been cheated at the polls, people suffering from the lockdown, in general, all the workers and middle class, should refuse to pay income taxes next april.

    a sufficient number who do so will hurt the profligate spenders in DC who deserve a haircut., if the media picks it up– if, considering that they will ignore and suppress the news– but if they do, if tax receipts suffer, then it will increase the risk premium on the US treasures, make borrowing more expense.

    at some point the rising interest rate could become too expense and cause a default

    that will not matter to you and me. our lives will go on

    It will matter to the billionaires, who control the US government and all its media and petty bureaucracies. It will hit them in the pocketbook

    and in fact it is the ONLY way to hit back at them

    before they give us more lockdowns, voter fraud, and untested vaccines

    #TAXPROTEST2020

    Saloth Sar

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