Temperature armbands in NJ schools is pure lunacy (Opinion)
Is there no end to the abject lunacy of this COVID-19 craziness when it comes to schools? Whether it’s parents insisting that schools stay open, or the NJEA insisting that schools stay closed, or the governor believing that it’s a good idea for kids to wear masks in school all day, it’s becoming comical.
I actually heard that one school is planning to line every single kid up every single morning and make sure that they all have their temperature taken. By the time that whole exercise in stupidity is finished, I estimate that the kids finally begin actual learning say — about lunchtime? But there’s one thing that went way past comedy into the scary zone. And that is the Butler, New Jersey school district coming up with the idea for temperature sensing armbands.
According to an article on News12.com, every student and staff member in the district will be required to wear a Bluetooth temperature-sensing armband. Even if it doesn’t occur to you that the imagery of people forced to wear armbands is so offensive, the idea of Butler school district requiring temperature sensing armbands of all students and staff is frightening. Forget the Nazi imagery of badges and armbands, how about the requirement of having to wear something that the government is tracking?
By the way, who is supposed to pay for all this equipment? Or how about how easy it would be to fool teachers or parents into thinking you’re really sick by messing with the armband? Feel like going home that day? Got a big test coming up? Just shove some of your hot lunch or one of those foot-warmer things under the band and voilà! You’ve got yourself a steamy 102.7 temperature.
What about the opposite scenario where a kid has a mild fever and then is sent home and forced to test for COVID-19, waits a couple days for results and then finds out it was just another mild virus? Now he’s missed three days of school for no reason. Also, will this be private data? Who is privy to these kids' temperatures? Will the kid sitting next to someone in math class be able to see the other kids' increasing or decreasing temperature and call him out? Will kids then run in a frightened frenzy out of the classroom to avoid the potential patient zero? Will that kid be stigmatized?
This, like most other issues related to avoiding the coronavirus is opening a can of worms the likes of which we have never seen before. In all of our fear and panic, people are coming up with more and more nonsensical ideas that will only add to the chaos. Nov. 5 can’t come soon enough. As soon as the election is over, let’s hope all of this hysteria is quelled.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi's own.
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