Liberals around the state are spiking the football over a COVID-19 being traced back to a Freedom Concert hosting by conservatives in the Helena area. Greg Gianforte was in attendance, which has led some Democrats to accuse him of being insensitive to public health needs. But, as is often the case, things are not as they appear. In fact, it appears that a bitter health official is politicizing COVID-19 as payback for the conference and to justify her heavy-handedness in the matter.
Montana Gazette first brought to you the story of how a Helena health officer, Drenda Niemann, promised to get police and prosecutors to harass the Freedom Concert organizers in the article, Angry Helena Official Promises to Prosecute ‘Let Freedom Ring’ Rally for Breaking COVID Rules.
Niemann – a Democrat – complained in an email the next day, “I believe they would have held their event without a plan or approval. We spent several hours with them attempting to make the event as safe as possible. I will be working with the County Attorney’s office to hold them accountable to our local order. I anticipate at least a citation for each violation.”
Reportedly, Niemann was incensed that the organizers had straw bales for people to sit on and they didn’t limit their freedom concert-rally attendance. Leave it to Democrats to complain that a rally for freedom wasn’t following a bureaucrat’s unconstitutional peaceful assembly-ban. Niemann is not on record complaining about Black Lives Matter rallies which also broke the health board’s arbitrary guidelines.
It’s unknown if Niemann got the prosecutions of rally organizers she was looking for, but she’s found another way to do pay-back. She’s claiming that certain COVID-19 cases have been “traced to the Freedom Concert” and wailing hysterically about how people will die from it.
However, what has not been determined is that anyone got COVID-19 from the event. What the newspapers are reporting – from Niemann – is that “several positive cases were linked to some people who went to the event.”
Please note – what is alleged is that “some people” who attended the event are “linked” to positive cases. Again, please note, it does not say that some people who attended the event had the virus or received it there…but merely that they are “linked” to it. No doubt, this is due to contact tracing which demonstrates increasingly that everyone is about six degrees of separation from COVID-19 (or realistically, one to two degrees away).
Niemann said yesterday, “Gatherings of this nature, and at this time, can quickly turn into super-spreader events.”
She went on to beg for information from those in attendance so she could ascertain how many could possibly have been infected who are somehow “connected” to the event. In other words, she’s fishing. Of course, if COVID-19 was as serious as they make it out to be, one would not have to desperately fish for information on contagion, but this is a virus you won’t even know someone has almost 9 out of 10 times unless they are tested (because they remain asymptomatic).
According to the best data available, the chance of no one having COVID-19 at an event like the Freedom Concert – which had hundreds upon hundreds of attendees – is next to zero. Certainly, someone had it. “Linking” the virus to those in attendance should be easy enough.
What’s happening in Montana is that the bitter mid-level, unelected bureaucrats who have had dictatorial power over the course of the last 7 months are becoming increasingly incensed that The People are stripping away their power by virtue of ignoring them. And that’s what Niemann – a Democrat drunk on her own power – is experiencing…frustration that no one is listening. But COVID-19 is largely a paper tiger, and Montanans will be corralled to our homes and forced to cover our faces for not much longer.
The truth is, nearly 6% of students at Carroll College in Helena have COVID-19. There are any number of positive cases that can be traced to school or colleges, sporting events, churches, government meetings, and public marketplaces. But only one event has solicited the extra attention of Drenda Niemann – a Republican-led concert to celebrate freedom. And looking at the evidence, it appear that her singling out of conservatives is entirely politically motivated.
And this is why Montanans don’t trust a single thing these health bureaucrats tell us.