Pandemic Pastimes and Masking Up
There’s so much bad news permeating the media these days we sometimes need a break. Naomi and I mask up and take daily walks during which only positive conversation is allowed. She’s exploring crafts and the other day we made a sea glass wind chime together for our sunroom. She researches and fixes healthy meals. I’m learning Spanish through the excellent site Duolingo; the goal is to emerge from the current darkness with something positive gained. We’re doing maintenance and improvement projects in and around our cottage by the river.
I’m at work on another novel, and I try to post something of interest each week to this blog.
Still, there’s no ignoring for very long the dire pandemic situation we all find ourselves facing. Here’s a recent post I’m repeating because every day it’s more relevant than ever. In fact, the subject is critical to our collective well being. I hope you’ll please pass it on:
Many people among us refuse to wear masks because they perceive it to be an infringement of their personal freedoms.
But if that’s true there are quite a few other strictures that could also be considered to compromise our freedoms. We’re not allowed to drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. We can’t cruise the Interstates at 100 mph. By law we must stop for school buses. We must wear seat belts. I’m a lifelong motorcycle rider and in my state of North Carolina I’m compelled to wear a helmet or face a stiff fine. Do these laws compromise our personal freedoms? I don’t think so. Without such laws we’d have far more needless deaths and injuries, higher insurance rates for all of us, and higher health care costs. I don’t believe any thinking person wants a lawless society in which anybody can do whatever they want in the name of freedom.
A recent study by the Goldenson Center for Actuarial Research found that mask wearing and social distancing can cut virus deaths by two thirds, and statistics in areas that have observed those easy, simple precautions would seem to bear that out.
At least if a motorcycle rider chooses to not wear a helmet, or somebody refuses to wear a seat belt, flouting laws which are intended to save those same people from severe injury or death, it’s only their lives that are in danger.
But people who drink and drive or text and drive or speed or don’t stop for school buses are putting others at grave risk, which is of course why we have strict laws preventing such behaviors.
As near as I can find out no other nation in the world protests the required or suggested use of masks to help fight this current common enemy of all humankind. Anthony Fauci, respected director of the National Institute of Allergic and Infectious Diseases, spoke out recently about people congregating without any recommended precautions. “They’re not physically distancing and they’re not wearing masks, and that’s a recipe for disaster.” We’re seeing that disaster playing out all around us now.
In our current circumstances, those who flout the rules and the best advice of pandemic experts like Fauci and refuse to wear masks in public or to social distance because it compromises their sense of freedom are not only risking their own lives but also potentially exponential numbers of other people’s lives as well.
And they have no right to do that. Even in free America.
Please be safe and help protect our fellow Americans. Shun unnecessary gatherings and mask up in public. Together we can beat this thing.
Check out the suspense series Guns, Diamondback, Kllrs, and Deathsman in print or Kindle on Amazon for some distracting pandemic reading. Descriptions and easy buy links at: www.philbowie.com