Life during a pandemic is predictably chaotic, as scientists deliver the best available information and elected leaders provide daily infection rates, death counts and contingency plans. That chaos is not helped when there is an incessant stream of misinformation, conspiracy theory and political haggling.
It says a lot about the state of America that we are actually having a national politically factionalized debate about wearing masks for safety. An Associated Press poll from July 23 shows that one in four Americans still do not see the imperative of wearing a mask. Daily, we see social media posts of people going ape about being turned away from businesses for not wearing a mask, vociferously and sometimes even violently declaring an infringement upon their rights. Really, though? Perhaps more people should spend time reading what their rights actually are, rather than declaring what they are.
All this haggling while the death toll continues to uptick. What I don't understand is why argue about whether or not more people are dying from COVID-19 here or abroad or whether or not we're testing more people. 170,000 people is still a lot of people dying of one cause since March, and now we're toying with the health and safety of our children, education professionals and their families.
It all just makes me wonder for that one out of four, when is enough enough? How many deaths and weeks of sickness and potential long-term ill effects will it take to get you to do a simple gesture for your fellow citizens? Being a citizen is not simply assuming your rights. It is taking responsibility for society with others in exchange of those rights.
I'm Joseph Flynn, and that's my perspective.
And to the teachers, administrators, support staff, bus drivers and students out there: Please take care as you go back to school.