Open Letter to Gov. Burgum, North Dakota

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3 mins read
Governor Doug Burgum

By Karen R. Sanderson

October 24, 2020

Dear Gov. Burgum,

More than 440 families in North Dakota have lost loved ones because of your Republican-led politicizing of the covid response. Since I started to take this situation seriously on March 8, my life has been relegated to technical texts, emails, and Zoom calls because of your lack of leadership. Our state motto should be amended to “Legendary Covid Deaths.” 

Because you couldn’t make rational medical decisions about containing the covid pandemic, we had no Easter and had to perform a distanced Mother’s Day. We missed out on enjoying our entire summer.  

I missed being with family and friends on my 63rd birthday in August because you have no spine about regulating best health practices and lacked the courage to stand up with the doctors and nurses on a scientific covid response. You took my birthday from me. 

I missed my oldest grandson’s 15th birthday in September. I couldn’t chance being around my family because of your lack of decision-making about covid. You stole that from me. 

Every year at Thanksgiving, I like to tell the story of my mom … she made the best baked chicken. But this one time, when she was taking the full baking pan out of the oven, she dropped it. Splat. Chicken breasts all over her spotless floor. We picked up the chicken, cleaned the floor, and ate the chicken. And we all laughed because it was some of her best. I won’t be able to share that story with my family this year at Thanksgiving because your lack of leadership in this pandemic stole that opportunity from me. 

I am looking at old photos of my mom and her siblings — mom on a bike when she was young, mom in the beach surf, mom in Clearwater during spring training. I won’t be able to share any old family photos at Christmas with my kids and grandkids because your incompetent response to this virus stole that from me. 

My son’s birthday is December 31st, New Year’s Eve. I’ll probably miss both. I won’t be able to spend his special day with him or watch the ball drop in NYC on TV. Your continued indifference to this pandemic stole that from me, too.

You did not get my vote. Dr. Shelley Lenz did. 

Photo courtesy Shelly Lenz campaign Facebook page

Featured photo by North Dakota National Guard on Creative Commons


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Going Rogue...late-blooming political activist. And a darn fine grandma. 🌊🌊 🏳️‍🌈-Ally 🇺🇸-born 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿-ancestors

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