People have to make their own benefit-cost, risk-reward calculations and most people are clearly going about it intelligently and creatively, writes William Watson in the Financial Post. Below is an excerpt from the article, which can be read in full here.

By William Watson, October 29, 2020

With apologies to Rex Murphy, who was its wonderfully civilized host for 21 years, I’ve never been a big fan of CBC’s Cross Country Checkup: too many sanctimonious progressives preaching how this or that ingrained aspect of human nature can be overturned quickly if only Parliament would translate their favourite policy nostrum into legislation ASAP, preferably yesterday. But I did happen to hear last Sunday’s edition on “Is it safe to go trick or treating?”

Pleasant surprise: nobody called for a national strategy, which is the progressive fall-back for just about everything. Mostly, the program was factual: what are you doing, or not doing, for Halloween? The guest expert was infectious disease superstar Dr. Susy Hota. I guess CBC wanted to give Drs. Isaac Bogoch and Lynora Saxinger Sunday off. We will miss them once the crisis passes.

One caller said her family wasn’t doing a traditional Halloween: even with their young kids, they felt the benefits weren’t worth the costs. So they were going to dress up at home, do an Easter-style scavenger hunt, send pictures and greet friends on social media and maybe watch a movie (“Oh, no! Not another movie!” you can hear the kids saying: how many movies have we all seen since March?).

Taking a decentralized approach, trusting in the creativity and good judgment of Canadians and letting them decide for themselves what level of risk they and their friends and families are comfortable with — that sounds like a pretty good way to handle many things. Not just Halloween but maybe even, within limits, COVID itself. And lots of other social problems and challenges, too.


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