Welcome to the Huckabee Show coming to you from all over the country instead of from our theater in Nashville. But this won’t last forever—and in the meantime, we’re making the best of it including inviting you to our Virtual Theater by getting Virtual Tickets so you can “Meet Me at the Couch.” Each week those with virtual tickets are put in random drawing for some cool swag from our show. Register for your virtual tickets at huckabee.tv
How’s the social distancing thing going? Don’t you sometimes just want to get in your car, go somewhere—anywhere—and just go up and hug someone; even a total stranger? For those of us who haven’t left our homes in 7 weeks, we are rapidly approaching the fight or flight moment. And in many states, things are starting to open up, albeit in spurts and small steps.
One thing we know—the models and predictions for how bad it was going to be were all wrong. For those who had an acute case of Wuhan Virus, it was awful. For those who’ve had a family member die from it, there are no words adequate to offer condolences and compassion. But I hope we feel the same way when an acquaintance dies of cancer or heart disease or from an accident. But we were told there would be up to 2 million in the US who would die, our hospitals would be overrun and suffer a serious shortage of equipment, and the impact of the virus would be unlike anything the world had ever seen. We followed the public health experts and didn’t just stop shaking hands-we stopped life. Schools closed for the year, all public events including NCAA March Madness, Major League Baseball, and the NBA shut down. Theaters and restaurants closed. Malls shuttered. Disney World and other theme parks went silent. Beaches closed. And even on Easter Sunday, churches closed. Some government officials went overboard, prohibiting fishing or planting gardens. Without haircuts we’ve accepted looking shabby. Offices reverted to online meetings while their office buildings are closed and everything is now down on Zoom or Skype. And with that, some people didn’t wear pants or forgot to close doors and may have revealed more their point of view to fellow office workers.
But as we start to re-open the world, I hope we will realize a big take-a-way from all this is to never again let government strip us our all our liberties and our common sense in the name of “protecting us.” When I was Governor of Arkansas, we often repeated a mantra in our office that said, “Trust the Lord and tell the people.” We were actually serious about it. It meant that we needed to remember we weren’t the highest authority in the lives of our people—God was. And that our job was to be honest with the people and tell them the truth, but realize they would have to ultimately choose what to do with the truth.
Life is filled with risks. We take them every day. We ultimately calculate the risks vs. the rewards and act accordingly. I can with 100% assurance guarantee to not have a car wreck if I don’t get in a car. There is no possibility I can fall off a ladder if I don’t get on one. I can’t be killed in a plane crash if I never board a plane. There are some risks I can eliminate. Others, I can mitigate—like wearing a mask or gloves, practicing social distancing, and sanitizing my hands. But I have to decide if the risk of a disease I might catch is a chance I have to take because the certainly of not being able to feed my family or pay my bills is one I do face by staying holed up in my house.
It’s not the government’s decision; it’s mine. And honestly, some people will violate whatever the rules are. Some people exceed the speed limit; others smoke, drink alcohol excessively, skydive, or climb mountains. They decide that the inherent risks are worth whatever rewards they feel. But in a free society, we allow people to make decisions and do things that scare the hair off our arms. And sometimes, people who take all the precautions imaginable still get hit by a falling limb, are diagnosed with stage 4 liver cancer, or get food poisoning from their Grandma’s pork chop. Be careful, but not fearful. Most of all, accept responsibility for your own life. Government isn’t God. It’s not family. It’s not even a very good friend sometimes.