As America continues to fight the long battle against the coronavirus, President Trump is promising Americans that life will return to ‘normal’ very soon.
This means a plan re-opening thousands of businesses… re-open schools, parks, resorts… and loosening social distancing guidelines.
Sounds pretty good, right?
Well, according to the majority of Americans, diving back into ‘normal’ life isn’t something they are ready to do… yet.
As first reported by The Daily Caller, new polls from Gallup and Harris show that the overwhelming majority of Americans are reticent of immediately returning to “normal” life.
Of the 3,881 respondents polled by Gallup between April 3-5, only 20 percent said they were “immediately” ready to return to “normal activities,” a 2 point drop from the responses gathered between March 27-29.
Meanwhile, 71 percent answered they want to “Wait to see what happens with the coronavirus before resuming” and 10 percent said they would “continue to limit [their] contact with other people and daily activities indefinitely.”
Another telling fact from the new poll is that both Republicans and Democrats favored easing back into normal life.
According to the poll, 79 percent of Democrats and 66 percent of Republicans would prefer to “wait.”
So what are Americans saying is the right time to return to normalcy?
According to the Harris poll, 51 percent of respondents think Americans need to wait more than a month before returning to work and “normal life.” 61 percent of Republicans said that period “should be at least a month.”
As we write this story, the Trump Administration and various state governors have discussed reopening segments of the economy and sending non-essential employees back to work to limit the economic downturn from the coronavirus pandemic.
Additionally, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top public health expert on the White House coronavirus task force, suggested earlier this week that the idea of sending people back to work on May 1, as publicly suggested by President Trump, is “overly optimistic.”
“We have to have something in place that is efficient and that we can rely on,” Fauci told the Associated Press. “We’re not there yet.”
No matter how well organized they are, we will be better organized. No matter how well they have concealed their activities, we will root them out.
Today, Federal investigation and enforcement of our narcotics laws are fragmented. One major element—the Bureau of Narcotics—is in the Treasury Department and responsible for the control of marihuana and narcotics such as heroin. Another—the Bureau of Drug Abuse Control—is in the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, and is responsible for the control of dangerous drugs including depressants, stimulants, and hallucinogens such as LSD.
Neither is located in the agency which is primarily concerned with Federal law enforcement—the Department of Justice.
This separation of responsibilities—despite the relentless and dedicated efforts of the agents of each Bureau—has complicated and hindered our response to a national menace.
For example, more than nine out of ten seizures of LSD made by the Bureau of Drug Abuse Control have also turned up marihuana—but that Bureau has no jurisdiction over marihuana.
In many instances, we are confronted by well organized disciplined and resourceful criminals who reap huge profits at the expense of their unfortunate victims.
The response of the Federal Government must be unified. And it must be total.
Today, in my Message on Crime, I recommended strong new laws to control dangerous drugs. I also recommended an increase of more than thirty percent in the number of Federal agents enforcing the narcotic and dangerous drug laws.
I now propose that a single Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs be established in the Department of Justice to administer those laws and to bring to the American people the most efficient and effective Federal enforcement machinery we can devise.
Under this Reorganization Plan the Attorney General will have full authority and responsibility for enforcing the Federal laws relating to narcotics and dangerous drugs. The new Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, to be headed by a Director appointed by the Attorney General, will:
—consolidate the authority and preserve the experience and manpower of the Bureau of Narcotics and the Bureau of Drug Abuse Control.
—work with states and local governments in their crackdown on illegal trade in drugs and narcotics, and help to train local agents and investigators.
—maintain worldwide operations, working closely with other nations, to suppress the trade in illicit narcotics and marihuana.
—conduct an extensive campaign of research and a nationwide public education program on drug abuse and its tragic effects.
The Plan I forward today moves in the direction recommended by two distinguished groups:
—1949 Hoover Commission.
—the 1963 Presidential Advisory Commission on Narcotic and Drug Abuse.
This Administration and this Congress have the will and the determination to stop the illicit traffic in drugs.
But we need more than the will and the determination. We need a modern and efficient instrument of Government to transform our plans into action. That is what this Reorganization Plan calls for.
The Plan has been prepared in accordance with chapter 9 of title 5 of the United States Code.
I have found, after investigation, that each reorganization included in the plan is necessary to accomplish one or more of the purposes set forth in section 901(a) of title 5 of the United States Code.
I have also found that, by reason of these reorganizations, it is necessary to include in the accompanying plan provisions for the appointment and compensation of the five new positions as specified in section 3 of the plan. The rates of compensation fixed for these new positions are those which I have found to prevail in respect of comparable positions in the Executive Branch of the Government.
Should the reorganization I propose take effect, they will make possible more effective and efficient administration of Federal law enforcement functions. It is not practicable at this time, however, to itemize the reduction in expenditures which may result.
I recommend that the Congress allow this urgently needed and important Reorganization Plan to become effective.
Lyndon B. Johnson.
The White House, February 7, 1968