Miami First Responders Get Infected, COVID-19, Coronavirus
(Photo by WikiMedia Commons)

Coronavirus fear and panic are real, palpable human reactions of late. That feeling played out during an emergency meeting by government officials in Miami Beach recently. During that meeting, Miami Commissioner Ricky Arriola said it might be time for first responders to “take one for the team” and voluntarily get infected with the coronavirus.

Commissioner Suggests First Responders Get Infected with Coronavirus

The bombshell came after Arriola first posed seemingly thoughtful questions about the coronavirus and COVID-19. Chief among them: do humans develop immunity after exposure?

“Are there any doctors in the audience? I don’t know, ’cause I’ve reached out to a couple of doctor friends to confirm,” Arriola said in a video published by “I don’t know yet, but I’ve been trying to research and no one’s answered the question: Do you develop – once you have the coronavirus, assuming you make it through – do you have immunity? Some doctors have told me yes.”

Then based on that possibility of that questionable immunity, the commissioner suggested infecting our first responders. He called it a bold move.

Take One for the Team

“To the extend that that is true, might we start thinking about – it’s dangerous but bold – it’s like chickenpox,” Arriola said. “With our first responders voluntarily taking one for the team, going through the two weeks – guys, we’ve got to be serious about this – and then developing the immunity? … It is our job to think boldly, and we’ve got to start thinking about this.”

Previously, Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber suggested first responders posed a risk of unknowingly spreading to virus. To be sure, law enforcement, EMTs and fire fighters will be on the front line of this fight.

“Frankly, if I had one message to send out to other people right now in government, at other levels of government, I’d say we desperately need to be able to test as much as we want to test and as often as we can test,” Gelber said, reported “We are this close to losing a lot of our first responders, and I don’t want to sound like the sky is falling, but that is something that could happen at any moment, and if it does, I think we’d be in a terrible place.”

To play devil’s advocate, plenty of folks, politicians chief among them, say wild things now and then on camera. But in this case, Arriola doubled down on his idea when approached a second time by media.

Arriola Doubles Down

“It was a question – let’s put it that way, Arriola told “I’m trying to be forward-looking and ask tough questions because if you don’t and this thing catches you by surprise, society could shut down.

“What are we gonna do in the event that our first responders start getting either exposure to the virus or catch the virus and we lose 25 percent, 50 percent of our first responders,” Arriola continued. “If we’re in a state of curfew or martial law and we have 50 percent of our first responders, what do we do?”

Finally, the commissioner put it into extremely simplistic terms. He posed controlling when essential personnel get the virus, to maintain some level of control over the impact of shortages caused by any illnesses.

“It’s a matter of do you want to just randomly get it? Or do you want to control when you get it?” Arriola told “Does it make sense to do this in a controlled, safe environment so they have immunity?”

For anyone appreciating this attempt at thinking outside the box, having first responders get infected on purpose isn’t “bold”; it’s dangerous. There’s so much we don’t know about this coronavirus or COVID-19. We would hope our leaders wouldn’t be so cavalier with the lives of those on the front lines.

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