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No COVID Amnesty Without Penance

The Atlantic recently ran an article by Emily Oster, in which she argued that amnesty is appropriate for those who made mistakes during the COVID pandemic. It’s a plea for us to come together and move forward – how magnanimous. You know the argument. Well intentioned and selfless public servants, making the best decisions possible, with imperfect information, made mistakes. But those mistakes were made with the best of intentions. Blah, blah, blah. Can’t we all just get along – now that the House Republicans have subpoena power?

What utter hypocrisy. Has the left ever forgiven anyone for the sake of moving forward. Oh sure, they’ll happily forgive corrupt politicians on their own side, and criminals from demographics they’re courting. But have they ever offered the slightest forgiveness where it didn’t actually benefit them?

Has the left shown mercy to the January 6th Capital trespassers? Many did little more than step over a poorly marked line to take selfies. The left initiated a nationwide manhunt to track them down and arrest them. The offenders have been charged with the most serious crimes the DOJ could dream up, held without bail, and face years in prison – for the sin of being aligned with the wrong political party. Now the oppressors would like mercy. How convenient.

How about the queen mother of all bad decisions based on poor information – the Iraq war? Has the left forgiven President Bush, who made the decision – with bipartisan congressional support – based on information which everyone believed, but which turned out to be wrong? Was six years of “Bush lied; people died” their version of amnesty for the sake of national healing?

In fact, no infraction is too small to draw the full wrath of the left. They have never shown even the slightest forgiveness for Donald Trump’s intemperate remarks. They have sought to impeach and indict him for the most minor of transgressions. It seems that calls for mercy are one directional.

Even Ms. Oster is not advocating for blanket amnesty. She included this little beauty in her piece:

Obviously some people intended to mislead and made wildly irresponsible claims. Remember when the public-health community had to spend a lot of time and resources urging Americans not to inject themselves with bleach?

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With that statement she is spreading disinformation herself (nobody ever said to inject bleach) and she’s excluding Donald Trump from her call for amnesty. That seems an odd way to advocate for forgiveness – basing it in political affiliation.

So now the party of earth worship and moral relativism is appealing to the teachings of the religion they malign the most for their salvation – Christianity. Okay. What does Christianity say about forgiveness. Regardless of one’s religious affiliation, there is great wisdom in the Lord’s prayer. As it says:

Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.

It is both a plea and a pledge. We ask for God’s forgiveness for our transgressions, and we promise to be forgiving to others. So yes, we should find it in our hearts to forgive the COVID sinners – and there is a process to do that.

The path to forgiveness involves confession, penance, and then forgiveness. 

The first step must always be confession. The guilty must show contrition by admitting their transgressions. That confession is precisely what is missing from Ms. Oster’s suggestion. None of the guilty have confessed to anything.

I haven’t heard Anthony Fauci confess his role in helping to create the virus (with gain of function funding) and then hiding its origin from Americans. I also haven’t heard him admit that he has provided any bad advice throughout our two-year nightmare of the pandemic.

I haven’t heard Joe Biden confess that he gambled with everyone’s lives when he mandated that we submit to a dangerous, unproven vaccine, that apparently doesn’t even work. Nor has he confessed that he didn’t let the crisis go to waste when he used it to attack our civil liberties.

I haven’t heard any of numerous governors confess that they used their emergency powers to strengthen their authoritative grip on their citizens to advance their political agenda. Have any even expressed remorse for setting the development of our children back by years – even after they knew school closures were nothing but a pointless pander to the teacher unions?

In fact, there haven’t been any confessions from the guilty. The Atlantic piece is little more than a trial balloon being floated by an intermediary. Her argument appears to be: I’m not saying anybody did anything wrong. But if they did, we should forgive them. And if we’re forgiving them anyway, there’s no reason to investigate any further – right?

Um, no. That’s not how forgiveness works. The guilty need to show that they are truly repentant. We need to hear from the actual guilty parties. They need to tell us what they did – all of it. Doing so front of a House investigating committee would be a good start.

Next, the guilty need to show remorse – as in do penance. The confessions should be followed by resignations, guilty pleas, and other works and deeds to prevent such a travesty from ever being perpetrated on the American people again. Without accepting accountability for their deeds, they’re not showing contrition – only regret at being caught.

Will the guilty confess and do penance? It seems a bit out of character, no? However, without those actions, they’re not actually showing remorse. They’re just asking to not be punished for something they are not even denying they would do again.

If they prove me wrong and actually confess and repent, there can be forgiveness and the healing can begin.

The American people are a forgiving people. Amnesty for the COVID transgressors is possible. But the first steps must be taken by the guilty. Just know that there can be no amnesty without penance – only retribution.

Author Bio: John Green is a political refugee from Minnesota, now residing in Idaho. He has written for American Thinker,American Free News Network, and The Blue State Conservative.  He can be followed on Facebook or reached at