Letter of the Week, July 29, 2020: Everyday coronavirus realities

Coronavirus dangers have put us in a position that restricts our freedoms that we’re accustomed to. The abrupt separation from other people, places, jobs and activities is not fair. 

It’s even more unfair for those who get sick and sometimes die. It’s also unfair to thousands of those who lose loved ones, but cannot have a funeral service. 

Loss of fairness does not give the rest of us a license to ignore simple safety guidelines. They’re intended to keep us safe. 

Public gatherings without any masks and social distance puts many at risk.

I walk my dog every morning and keep a safe distance from others. When I’m close to others, I wear a mask. 

On occasion, a maskless runner will get too close to me while passing by. Each time, I hope that their breath will not spray me with a mist of coronavirus.

If they infect me, how many people will I infect before I get sick? Why do I protect runners from what I exhale?

When we served in Vietnam, we never knew which individuals were our enemies. Today we are at war with a dangerous, invisible enemy that can be carried by anybody. 

Simple precautions against this enemy are easy. A little maturity on our part can save many lives. But states like Texas and Florida resisted safety precautions. Now they’re tragic examples of what can and will go wrong.

Political leaders who minimize the hazards of COVID-19 are sending a dangerous message. Dr. Anthony Fauci has made a long career of studying infectious diseases. His guidelines are for safety and have no political content. 

His simple instructions are scoffed at by political people who don’t think they should be bothered by such minor inconveniences. 

Our leaders who attack him clearly communicate their own ignorance and immaturity. 

Dr. Fauci is a mature professional and does not stoop to the childish level of his attackers.

Sadly, willful ignorance is widespread and has elevated COVID-19 to the crisis that we are now in. Well-intended mistakes like opening bars have backfired, because people get increasingly careless as they imbibe. 

I’m sure that most Americans take necessary precautions. If the careless others did the same, we wouldn’t be shutting down our economies again.

We’ve all heard the old Ben Franklin quote, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Thus far, old Ben’s spirit hasn’t returned to remind humans of that.

David Tschoepe




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