[Ed. – Debate question for today.]
Who has the burden of proof regarding the economic lockdowns: Those who argue for continuing them or those who want to lift them?
The public health establishment, the mainstream media and most Democratic politicians assume that the burden of proof lies with the lockdown opponents. Advocates of reopening must show that any change to the current status quo will be “safe.” If the reopeners fail to make that showing, the lockdowns remain in place. With the burden of proof thus configured, proponents of continued economic stasis need not justify the “new normal”; moribund businesses and unemployed workers have become the default mode of social existence. A Tuesday news story in The New York Times exemplified this default thinking: “Public health experts … have long warned that opening up shops and releasing citizens from their homes could be more difficult and dangerous than shutting them in,” the Times reported.