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Kelly Stafford, wife of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, has been fed up the past couple weeks. Previously, she aired grievances about the atmosphere at Ford Field and about her husband getting placed on the NFL’s COVID reserve list due to contact tracing. Today, in her Instagram stories, she expressed frustration with what she said is a “dictatorship” in Michigan, where governor Gretchen Whitmer announced sweeping new shutdowns this past week.
“I’m over living in the dictatorship that we call Michigan,” Stafford said. “I understand there’s a pandemic and I understand it’s very scary. I’m scared of it too. If you’re at risk, do not leave your house until there’s a vaccine. But shutting down all these small businesses, things that people have worked their life for, shutting them down again is not the answer. Because they will not make it.”
“So once we are able to leave our house, once this dictatorship allows us to have some freedom, there will be nothing left,” she continued. “I’m just over it. I see all these people and it brings me to tears.”
I live in Chicago, and it’s felt inevitable throughout the Midwest that we were headed into this position with lockdowns as it gets colder. Where I am completely with Stafford is that it feels fundamentally un-American to force these small businesses to close down for the purported public good, but not compensate them for their sacrifice. There will be ripple effects felt for years to come.
Update: Kelly Stafford apologized on Instagram for using the word dictatorship: