According to the experts, one of the key components to controlling the Coronavirus pandemic is social distancing. By keeping at least six feet from one another, the hope is to slow the spread of the illness. The theory is that in this way people will still be able to enjoy a semi-normal life so long as they maintain an acceptable space between themselves and others.
As a result, large gatherings, such as sporting events, concerts, conventions and even dining out have become prohibited. Most states have taken this a step further, issuing “stay at home” orders, shutting down all but “essential” businesses. This includes schools, which have led many parents to develop a new respect for teachers as they struggle with on-line education.
There are signs that this strategy is working, even to the point that the Trump administration is now, once again, talking about reopening the economy, at least in some areas, by May 1, although the surgeon general warns that many areas will not be ready and premature opening could lead to a resurgence of the virus.
Unfortunately, not everyone is practicing this. During the recent Spring Break, thousands of college students flocked to the beaches, possibly creating a new breeding ground for further outbreaks.
The sense of invincibility is common among the young. Lack of experience and an underdeveloped brain have caused them to engage in outlandish behavior since time immemorial. Most of us can look back at times when we had that “I’m lucky to be alive” experience. This generation is no different in that respect, so we can forgive their youthful exuberance.
What we cannot forgive is the refusal of certain government officials to shut down the beaches and restaurants to stem the spread of this virus. Not coincidentally, every state that has refused to issue “stay at home “ orders is led by Republicans, who accept the opinion of Mr. What do You Have to Lose, Donald Trump, over the medical professionals.
Even when stay at home orders are in effect, some religious organizations have refused to comply, even sending out transportation to bring their congregations together. Like the young people flocking to the beaches, these religious leaders are putting themselves and others at risk.
Everyone needs to get the message. The longer we refuse to comply with social distancing, the longer we will remain apart….and at risk.