Sherman R. Frederick
Battle Born Media

Americans have rights with or without COVID-19. When Gov. Steve Sisolak used emergency powers to suspend those rights to fight the pandemic, Nevadans by and large obeyed.

We hunkered down and took precautions like any person with good sense would do. We did it even though state and national authorities issued conflicting statements on how to stay safe during the pandemic.

Remember a month ago when we were told we didn’t have to wear masks in public? Now every state advises the wearing of masks. That’s a pretty basic precaution to get wrong, don’t you think?

And how about the exercise thing. Go to a local park, authorities initially said, or escape to an open space and walk. Then, the parks and open spaces started to close on the grounds that they were too crowded. Last weekend, local police were on California beach pathways stopping people and asking them if they were from the immediate area. And get this: Beach parking lots were closed to all cars except those with a handicapped placard.

How does that make any sense?

In Marin County California, the last bastion for aging hippies, citizens were prohibited from engaging in “cosmetic” gardening. You could work on your own property if it related to fire prevention, but absolutely no “cosmetic” landscaping. Gardeners of the world, unite!

Gun stores at first were allowed to stay open as essential businesses in San Mateo County, south of San Francisco. And they did land-office business. There were lines around the block. Then the anti-gun folks pressured public health officials to declare gun shops non-essential.
So today in the little coastal town of Pacifica, the town’s one gun shop is closed, but the handful of marijuna stores there are deemed essential and open for businesses. Good for people who need a bong and a bag of weed, but bad for anyone who values the Second Amendment.

Hospitals and nursing homes across the nation banned visitors, including family. If mom is on her deathbed, you were advised to send her a nice goodbye text. Ridiculous.

The point is that details of the emergency orders issued by governors don’t bear close scrutiny. It’s no wonder Americans are getting restless. We’ve made a lot of fast decisions out of an abundance of caution, not out of an abundance of knowledge.

Here in Nevada, we’ve been under a one-size-fits all lockdown in which towns like Ely, Caliente, Tonopah and Hawthorne were treated like Las Vegas. That may have been necessary to start, but now?

Let’s reopen Nevada. Start with rural Nevada.


— Louisiana has a new parish. It’s called Bayou Self.

— When it comes to dangerous cults, practice safe sects.

–Nostalgia for old breweries is a thing of the Pabst.

And with that, ladies and germs, I’ll let myself out. Be well; avoid soreheads and see you next time around.


Sherman R. Frederick is the founder of Battle Born Media, publisher of the Ely Times and four other intensely local community newspapers  in Nevada. He may be reached at