LowT Gimenez COVID-19 plans endangers us all...

Political Cortadito:

Carlos Gimenez can’t get it right on COVID-19 orders, endangers us all

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Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez had to walk back his fourth executive order to curb the coronavirus community spread on Saturday, reversing gears from Thursday, when he closed pawn shops as one of the non-essential businesses.
Pawn shops was in the middle of a long list of businesses that were ordered closed in a press release and in a video message from the mayor on March 19, his first order of closures after restaurants’ dining rooms.
“The mayor highlighted in his video what was essential to stay open, and listed some non essential, according to the interpretation of [the] County Attorney’s Office (CAO),” said Myriam Marquez, the mayor’s spokeswoman. “Then CAO was informed by those businesses that pawn shops have an exception under federal law — they’re included in [the] Patriot Act.”
The county attorney’s office “researched and amended the order.” The pawn shops schooled her. Okay, so we’re going to throw County Attorney Abigail Price-Williams under the bus for that one. But there’s more.

On Friday morning, Gimenez ordered that all hotels and motels shut down and throw guests out by Monday night. He walked that back by Friday evening, making exceptions for “essential personnel and people who are unable to get back into their homes.”
And that could cover a lot of people in Miami-Dade, including stranded visitors from countries whose airports or airlines have shut down, airline personnel, the families of patients in our hospitals, journalists from out of town, women escaping domestic violence and homeless who are sometimes put up by organizations at cheap hotels. Even some people and families who live paycheck to paycheck live at hotels on weekly or monthly rentals.
But Grimenez didn’t know this. It is waaaay outside his bubble. Even before self-isolation in his comfy Coconut Grove home after coming into contact with a Brazilian delegate who tested positive, the county mayor (who tested negative) has long been disconnected from the rest of the world, oblivious to the real lives that most of us live. He has two pensions and his wife probably has one and he doesn’t have to worry about living paycheck to paycheck.
Apparently, someone told him about the needy people. Lobbyist Ron Book maybe? Book, a serial donor who has given tens of thousands to the mayor’s many campaigns, represents the Homeless Trust — and Grimenez probably answers all his calls.
But, again, it’s not the mayor’s first, or second, moonwalk. And it shows that he is still the same lone wolf politico who doesn’t want to take any advice from anyone outside his inner circle. Self-isolation has only made him more disconnected from the rest of us and more arrogant. Because now, when he thinks he is the smartest guy in the room, he is!
Gimenez also had to walk back Thursday’s executive order closing all public and private colleges and universities after he was told that some students who live on campus couldn’t get home and have nowhere to go. He got a letter from the presidents of Barry, St. Thomas and Florida Memorial universities practically begging him to change his mind. So he did, allowing campus housing to remain open while classes have to still go online.
For now, anyway.
And the mayor walked back his earlier closing of all public and private marinas, after someone mentioned that there may be people out on the ocean in their boats and he can’t just leave them stranded.
On Sunday, he walked back that walk-back — or, in other words, reversed the reversed decision — closing marinas and boat ramps to anyone except commercial fishermen after videos were posted of several boats rafting, or tied together, having a typically Saturday or Sunday on the sandbar at Haulover Beach. Or, rather, after the Miami Herald posted a story about those videos and social media photos in the wake of the mayor signing of an anti-rafting order.
“Unfortunately, some of our residents are not taking this seriously,” Gimenez said in his daily video message Sunday. “I was very disappointed to see …people partying in their boats in close proximity.”
They should have known to stay further away from each other, but there was no way that young group of party people knew that just hours earlier that same Saturday Gimenez had signed an executive order banning rafting. He didn’t get the word out. Or he signed that too late. Did someone tell him? “Hey, it’s Saturday, there are boats on the water.”
So Gimenez has closed all recreational boating activities. You can still come back from the sea. You just can’t go out to sea. And it will be enforced, the mayor said. “Miami-Dade Police will be out on the water and shutting down any parties.
“I realize people that they want to go out and enjoy our sunshine. But there are responsible ways to do this. Partying is not one of them,” Gimenez said, sounding more like a dad than a mayor. “I cannot stress enough the need for personal responsibility.”
Personal responsibility? Hmmmm. He is one to talk. Ladra wonders how much personal responsibility Gimenez will take for acting late on the pandemic and endangering more lives.
In fact, if we go way, way back to when the city of Miami cancelled Ultra and the Calle Ocho festival earlier this month, Gimenez was critical and said he was not going to cancel anything because it was overkill for what amounted to a bad flu. Days later he walked that “live your life” attitude back and cancelled the Youth Fair, the Miami Open tennis tournament and a slew of other events. Days later he is on video every day telling us to take personal responsibility and that we could be carriers. The nerve!
Grimenez only got serious about the pandemic after he himself was exposed during a U.S-Brazilian business summit here. And since then, even though he tested (without any symptoms) negative, he has been in self isolation recording daily video messages for us that have little and/or useless information.
On Sunday, he was thanking Miami Mayor Francis Suarez and Miami Marlins owner Derek Jeter for partnering with the county and Jackson Health Systems and the University of Miami to start a drive-through testing operation at Marlins Park — um, sometimes this week. He had no specific date for when that would start and said more details would be coming Monday.
Or it could be the next thing he walks back. Marlins Park? Um, we meant Tropical Park. Tests? Um, we meant pets. Come adopt a pet at Tropical Park — just stand six feet away from each other.
What a way to waste a real opportunity to lead.
If there is one good thing to come out of the pandemic, it’s that Gimenez won’t be elected to Congress after this Epic Fail.

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