LANDRY: COVID In Retrospect

Last week, I celebrated Louisiana Health Freedom Day by meeting with constituents and discussing the COVID pandemic and how to ensure the rights of patients, parents, students, and business owners are never infringed upon again. My time with these patriots made me not only marvel at how far we have come since the lockdowns, but also realize that we must not forget our struggle to reach this point.  

Standing up for basic human rights during the pandemic was not politically convenient – and may still not be now – but it was the right thing to do. Our Constitution is the soul of our Nation; and it was written to get us through the darkest times, not grant us rights only when times are good. Our Founding Fathers knew epidemics very well; and before modern advances in hygiene and infrastructure, bouts of cholera and smallpox were frequent. Yet, nowhere in that great document is there an asterisk stating “all of these rights must be suspended in event of plague.” 

Throughout the pandemic, we were coerced by government into isolation and constraint. Their restrictions decimated our economic choices to indulge a handful of monopolies and destroyed small businesses — especially black-owned businesses. They restricted the marketplace of ideas in favor of profitable dogma while censoring scientists, doctors, and researchers at the expense of American lives. Then, to add insult to injury, they forced experimental medical procedures onto our citizens – using private businesses, under threat of punishment, to enforce unconstitutional mandates.  

As Thomas Jefferson said, “a society that will trade a little liberty for a little order will lose both and deserve neither.” By allowing ourselves to be corralled by fear, our liberties were stolen with a whisper. That is why I fought back against these powers – from the Governor to social media companies, and the federal government to even the Louisiana Board of Pharmacy when they refused to fill legitimate prescriptions by licensed physicians. I opposed the unlawful lockdowns and fought to re-open our churches and businesses. I opposed the onerous mask mandates, especially for our children, and lobbied for the expansion of digital learning. I defended parental rights to make healthcare and educational decisions, and I pushed for football games to commence when families rallied for a return to the field.  

All the while, I never forgot you or your families. I always considered our parents and grandparents who depend on programs like Head Start, our women and children who might get locked into homes with their abusers, and our job creators who were forgoing their own checks to cover the expenses of their employees. I knew that a one-size-fits-all approach to health care was absolutely wrong. I fought tirelessly against vaccine mandates, especially those imposed upon our children. I argued that the CDC should not be treating kids in low-income households as lab experiments, nor should pharmaceutical companies be allowed to use their families as cash cows. I also highlighted concerns about myocarditis and pericarditis early on, noting that adverse events from these injections were severely under-reported.  

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We are only now starting to see the true cost of these policies. Our children – particularly those in underserved populations – are suffering from both social and mental deficits. Too many small businesses destroyed by the pandemic are never coming back, as their owners struggle after filing for bankruptcy. Suicide rates increased, patients died alone while their loved ones were threatened with arrest for being on hospital grounds, and safe therapeutics that might have saved lives were maligned in favor of Russian roulette. Although the press was quick to criticize my attempts to right these terrible wrongs, they never bothered to ask why I did it.  

I took on these challenges because I believe in preserving the rule of law, protecting our children, ensuring our sovereignty, and defending our people from a federal bureaucracy that cares more about profits and power than it does about liberty and freedom. I am proud to have stood in the breach alongside a courageous few to defend truth, help the sick, and protect the vulnerable.  

My fight has always been for all: man and woman, black and white, rich and poor, conservative and liberal, and even pro-jab or anti-vax. If this pandemic taught me anything, it is that we can never be complacent. Without fail, we must stand up for what is right – especially when it goes against the narrative. 

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