- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 28, 2020

California Gov. Gavin Newsom says the state will “very, very shortly” issue new COVID-19 guidance ahead of Thanksgiving and Christmas, pushing back on critics who have suggested the state is planning on hindering the holidays during the pandemic.

“Some folks are asserting that we put out guidelines for the holidays,” Mr. Newsom, a Democrat, said Tuesday. “They were simply misled we have not put out Thanksgiving guidelines.”

Californians, including some Hollywood celebrities, politicians and a newspaper editorial board, have criticized the California Department of Public Health’s Oct. 9 guidance that calls for outdoor family gatherings, individual disposable containers and a three-household limit as a hindrance on the holidays.

Some have lamented Thanksgiving plans, noting that the guidance discourages meeting for long periods and playing wind instruments.

U.S. Rep. Tom McClintock, a Republican who represents Northern California, blasted the guidance in a Facebook post: “Your family Thanksgiving dinner must be outside, with family members seated at least six feet from each other, and may only last two hours. (Guests may use the bathroom inside IF it is sanitized after each use; otherwise, presumably, use the bushes). Three grown children? Only two are allowed, and you must collect names and contact information. And for God’s sake, NO SINGING! Happy Thanksgiving, California.”

Comedian Daniel Lawrence Whitney, who performs as Larry the Cable Guy, registered his frustration with Gov. Gavin Newsom’s rules, calling the Democrat a “moron” who “shouldn’t be in charge of cleaning toilets, let alone a state.”

An editorial in The Desert Review, a newspaper covering the Imperial Valley in Southern California, called the rules “nonsense.”

“People who do not want to be exposed will stay home,” reads the editorial, published Monday. “And if someone gets COVID? The survival rate is 99 percent, perhaps higher if you chose a doctor who uses hydroxychloroquine.”

A University of Washington study, published Saturday, found that patients given hydroxychloroquine contract the coronavirus at the same rate as patients given a placebo. Still, the governor of the country’s most-populous state says new guidelines are on their way in time for the holidays. A Newsom spokesperson told The Washington Times in an email that there would be “no arrests.”

Other states already have issued their holiday guidance, suggesting that Thanksgiving 2020 will look much different from years past.

Health officials in Massachusetts have encouraged mask-wearing indoors when not eating or drinking, and opening windows and doors to improve ventilation. Rhode Island has warned against traveling for Thanksgiving.

“I’m asking you please to consider staying home for Thanksgiving, even if you typically travel to see aunts, uncles, family and friends,” Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo said this week.

The Department of Health in Minnesota says indoor gatherings should be capped at 10 people.

Nationally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that people follow state guidelines and notes that in-person gatherings “pose varying levels of risk.”

This week, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, encouraged families with persons with underlying conditions or the elderly to consider to “forestall” Thanksgiving. He said on ABC’s “Good Morning, America” that his children won’t be coming home for Thanksgiving this year.

Positive cases of COVID-19 across the U.S. are on the rise again, triggering worries of a third wave, as cooler temperatures send more Americans indoors. As of Wednesday, more than 8.7 million cases had been confirmed nationwide.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2020 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide