A better way

BANNING misinformation about Covid-19 (and the vaccines) is perhaps the surest way to make it more believable for certain folks. Worse, erroneous claims will still be out there, this time in online echo chambers where no one will point out that they’re wrong.

As The Wall Street Journal stated recently, “government-directed control of speech on the pandemic could heighten suspicion of official guidance. ‘Misinformation’ has become a political buzzword often used to limit scientific debate, including on the virus’s origins. Evidence of the vaccine’s benefits is overwhelming, and doubters are more likely to be won over by consistent and direct rebuttals of myths.”

We need more reaching out to the people, and more public education. Using data and other facts, we should continue to explain why vaccine skeptics are wrong. But we should also acknowledge that, in the end, despite all our efforts, there will still be some people who won’t believe us.

We cannot “silence” them, but we can relegate their faulty notions to the fringes of society.

Friendly reminder

AS the House leaders ponder the shopping habits of their political adversary, some members of the public are wondering if they will finally hear about policy proposals that can help address concerns regarding, for example, the medical referral program or funding for the retirees’ pension benefits.

After all, during last year’s campaign season, House leaders vowed to “work to develop a diversified and sustainable economy that will improve the standard of living for all of our people” and “support the growth and development of locally owned small businesses” and “support increased investments in our Commonwealth's healthcare system,” and “expand access to affordable and quality healthcare for all CNMI residents” — among many other goodies.

So where are the bills pertaining to these and other pressing issues?

Of course, some may believe that right now, it is absolutely more urgent to find out if the governor is into gardening or farming and why, of all things, didn’t he purchase gardening/farming tools from a local hardware! The horror, really.

But it would also be interesting to know if the crusaders in the House have actual ideas and/or recommendations about the other vital issues facing the public.

A nonpartisan issue

SOMETHING is truly wrong with current law, the rules and/or the people tasked to implement/explain them when reputable investors like the Hyatt and now E-Land are left twisting in the wind.   

In the case of E-Land’s reasonable proposal regarding the former Mariana Resort property, if the law and/or the rules are the obstruction then repeal or amend them please — before we end up with another Mariana Resort fiasco.

Mariana Resort’s then-owner, as some may still recall, had to abandon the property because the terms of DPL’s RFP “were not realistic or feasible.”

So here we go again.

To quote the American president, C’mon, man!


Zaldy Dandan is the recipient of the Best Editorial Writer Award of the Society of Professional Journalists, and the CNMI Humanities Award for Outstanding Contributions to Journalism. His three books are available on amazon.com

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