by Joe Courter
So Trump and others in the administration tested positive. October Surprise #1. How this plays out regarding campaigning, debates and the election remains to be seen. I can’t help but wonder if we are being played. You, who are reading this now, know more than I do writing this on Oct. 2.
The University reopening has predictably led to many scenes of unmasked students clustered together at bars and on the sidewalks. We people who live in town and have been doing a good job of masking and distancing are rightly appalled. And not just for ourselves, but for the service workers, store workers, and university employees who may become infected due to the University’s decisions. Yes, they are covering their asses with strict rules on campus, but we in the community are suffering the consequences of the off-campus behavior.
Kudos to our local governmental entities for early awareness and continued vigilance on safety concerns. Currently they are also doing what they can to help local restaurants downtown with street closures to facilitate outdoor eating areas, and having free parking in the downtown parking garage. Our community kept many of these places afloat with take-out orders, this option is still available, too.
Special note should be taken to applaud many of our local establishments who are openly resisting the Governor’s decree to open up on the seating restrictions. It says a lot about their valuing their workers’ and customers’ safety over the extra money they could make. Support these places, wear your mask and tip generously.
Thanks to this country’s failure at dealing with this pandemic, it is stretching out way longer and more devastatingly than in any other country. It is often so tempting to loosen up on our own personal vigilance, especially when seeing others do that.
Please don’t. Be sensible and avoid indoor gatherings as much as possible. Eat well, go outside, take care of yourself. Use your phone for needed conversations with friends new and old – we are all starving for human contact these days. Support each other.
And great thanks to those who teach, who are being forced to do a juggling act with minimal support and great personal risk. It is horrible that this nation and state so value boosting the economy at human expense, rather that supporting people the way so many other countries have. Also huge thanks to our health care workers who are caring for people, doing the testing, and living in dread in that high-risk environment. If you know folks on the front line, send them some love.