Mercy, will we overcome this?
All the world is just as we have made it
What does anyone have to gain by declaring a virus as serious, but it in truth is a hoax? How does that benefit anyone exactly? I feel like I just need to write those two questions down in order to understand either of them, but in reality, there is no benefit for anyone.
How would tanking an economy help a political party? To elect a new President? Is that really a logical end-game for anyone? No! So, let’s tank an economy, gain power, and…have to deal with a terrible economy and a limping, wounded, dying country of people. Sounds like a really great plan. The world has been looking down on us for years, why would any of them go along with a plan this reckless and stupid just for our gain?
There is no logical reason.
The worst part of this, you can’t tell them otherwise. Throw facts at them, they cry fake news. You show them that Republicans like Mitch McConnell or Trump said he’s all for masks, they say he’s being pressured into saying that. Sure, someone pressured Trump into doing something he doesn’t want to do, that would be legitimately the first time it’s happened. He doesn’t do anything he doesn’t want to, that’s what makes him a terrible leader. You show them Dr. Fauci quotes, they say he’s a stooge and paid off by Democrats. There’s absolutely no way to get through to them. They’ll tell you this will lead to vaccine IDs, digital entry into public places, or other dystopian-level requirements, as if this country even has the infrastructure to support such outlandish ideas. Even if they contract Covid and survive, “it’s harmless, I survived”, no matter the health ramifications they’ll likely deal with the rest of their lives, no matter that young and healthy people are dying, like 41 year old Nick Cordero, or the thousands of other deaths of people under 55 from the virus.
Have these people even been to a doctor in the last five years? Do they know if they have high blood pressure? Does their family have any medical issues in their history? Do they even care if they did?
I have no idea how we’ll ever get out of this mess but I know what will be our downfall — people who don’t care about the rest of us. This idea of individual over community that’s been proliferated throughout our society since I can remember is killing us right now. The majority, or possibly just a loud minority, of our society only cares about themselves, that everyone else should fend for themselves, and we only need to be concerned with our individual liberties. We shouldn’t care about those damn Democrats, they’re trying to tear this country apart with healthcare for everyone, mail-in ballots so people don’t have to risk their health by going to the voting booth, they’re protesting black people being murdered by police, etc. They’ll tell you we lost our chance to impose public health measures like wearing a mask because people protested black people being murdered, as if there’s any correlation between the two.
Long story short, we’re screwed. We’re screwed because a pandemic is a political wedge in America. Not anywhere else in the world. Just in America. We’re the laughing stock of the world. We’re certainly not great. It’ll be a long damn time until we ever get to that mountain top. We need to all realize we are one, large, connected group of people. This virus originated in China but has reached nearly every small, nook, and cranny of the world, proving the notion that we are part of one inter-connected world community, that one action across the globe affects everyone — the price of brake pads in Taiwan has a ripple effect in Florida or South America. We are all inter-connected, dependent on one another.
I don’t know what to do any longer. I know getting in arguments on Facebook isn’t the answer — if it was, we’d have solved a lot since 2006. I am sick and tired of reading the comments, the vitriol, the arguments that don’t solve anything and just devolve into name-calling and shit-talking. Talking to opposite minded folks seems fruitless at times, people end up angrier or more entrenched in their views than they were when they started. Stupid “libtards” or “repugnants,” or Trumpeters (with brass balls, mind you), that’s all just childish stuff you’d say in middle school, repeating what your parents said even if you don’t fully understand what it means. Believe me, I’ve tried talking to people who don’t agree with my views more times than I can count. Voting? Maybe. I know it’s a tool but other than state-wide and national elections, there’s so much gerrymandering involved in district-level voting that we’re no longer a representative democracy. I’m not saying people shouldn’t vote because we should always vote, no matter how local or unimportant the seat or office is and regardless of how deep red or blue your district or state is. Sidebar — Vote. In. Every. Election.
But overall, I want us to care about each other. Not our “individual liberties”, we’re in America after all — that’s ingrained in our very being. I just want us to care about each other in the sense that our actions define us as who we are, that not wearing a mask means you don’t care about anyone — not yourself, not your family, not the cashier or stocker, not the fellow customers in whatever place of business you find yourself in these days. You not taking precautions against this says you don’t even care about yourself. Yeah, you get sick, you might get better, but was it really worth it? It may not seem that bad because it’s not in your face, you probably don’t know someone who is sick, was sick, or someone who cares for the sick and dying, whatever the case may be.
I have family that cares for the sick and dying from this virus. I have family that’s died from this virus. I know it is serious. I know it can kill you. If you don’t, give it a few months. Wait until September. Wait until we get to Thanksgiving, or Christmas, and this virus is still going full-steam ahead and we don’t have a viable vaccine in place for months. Are you going to want to take the chance and gather around your family? I don’t. I care about them too much to risk anything. Call me weak, call me whatever you want. I’ll judge myself after this is all over and count the people I still have in my life. That will be my measuring stick, not your opinion of me. That matters less and less each day.
We don’t have to imagine how life was going to be when states reopened and people felt as if they needed to go back to life as usual. We’ve already witnessed it. Florida, Texas, Arizona. I wrote about it back in April, “How busy do you think bars and restaurants will be? Malls and department stores, gas stations, everything.” Reader, they’re packed. Come to La Crosse, Wisconsin and see for yourself. Actually, no. Don’t come here, not until it’s safe.
June was a hell of a month for La Crosse County. We started the sixth month of the year with 56 total cases. July came and we have, as of July 7th, 521 total lab-confirmed cases. You can blame protests all you want but there’s no earthly way you can lay 465 cases on protests. Like everywhere else that has had astronomical spikes in cases, it’s because of bars, restaurants, and other indoor, close-quarters where people congregate in groups and don’t wear masks.
I don’t know how to tell you that you need to care about other people. It feels like a recurring theme for the last five years.
I’m throwing up my hands. I’m giving up trying to make people understand, it’s damn near impossible. If you don’t care at this point, I don’t think you ever will and that is profoundly sad.
All I know, all that I have in this world, tells me we’re at the most important tipping point in my life. We need to come together, now more than ever in the history of this country.
God, please help us, for we cannot do it alone.