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OPINION
June 1, 2020

4/8/2020 12:44:00 PM
We all have a job

There's so much we don't know about COVID-19, but one thing is for certain: It is easily spread, even by people who don't know they have contracted the coronavirus that causes the disease.

It's nearly impossible to predict who will get the disease, who has had the disease and already recovered from it, or who will suffer worst from the symptoms.

We simply don't know who will live or who will die.

Meanwhile, national news outlets are touting this week the be the worst one. Yes, that's probably true for New York City, the epicenter in the U.S. at this point. The caseloads there have been increasing rapidly for several weeks, and while officials believe this week will see the worst numbers, they are hoping, too, that the rates of infection and deaths will finally start to level off, if not decrease.

However, we here in Indiana and in the rest of the U.S. - the so-called fly-over states between the East and West coasts, are about two to three weeks behind what New York City has been experiencing, according to Gov. Eric J. Holcomb. Maybe even longer.

So despite what we are hearing on the networks and in the metropolitan newspapers, we cannot think that this pandemic is almost over.

That means we must remain vigilant in practicing social distancing, and in self-isolation or self-quarantine.

It seems like the Stay at Home orders in Indiana and other states, Including Ohio and Kentucky, have been in place for months. But, we all must persevere.

With the warmer spring weather tempting us all to come outside, be mindful to stay at least six feet away from others who aren't already in your household. Find places to walk where there are very few other people and get that much-needed exercise and fresh air.

Refrain from getting together with your other family members, no matter how long you have been separated. Because we just don't know who has been exposed to the virus and may be carrying it.

We. Just. Don't. Know.

But we do know from the experiences of other countries and some cities in the U.S., like San Francisco, that social distancing does work to mitigate the spread of this insipid virus. Conversely, we have seen the disease run rampant in states and cities that have ignored the advice of medical experts because, well, this is America and we can all do what we want, right?

Wrong.

We all have the right not to be infected with a deadly disease, especially when we know it can be avoided.

On Facebook, for example, someone posted that a person who worked in the same assisted living facility where the poster's mother lives held a party with more than 30 people attending.

The next day, that person found out that he had tested positive for
COVID-19. So now, everyone at that party, including other employees of the same facility, were now exposed and likely to have carried the disease back to the residents they are supposed to care for.

Church leaders who insist on having their congregations gather for Sunday services - and even more tempting for Christians, Easter services - are playing Russian roulette with their members and the loved ones of those members, who are being put at risk by ignoring the rules for staying safe.

It is really hard to stay inside or away from other people. We are social animals, after all.

But it is our job, as Americans and inhabitants of this planet we call home, to ensure as many of our friends, family, co-workers, etc., survive this pandemic as possible.

Be a hero to everyone you know, and everyone around you. Wash your hands with soap; use hand sanitizer if you can find it. Use online conferencing to visit loved ones. Stay home.





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