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Finger Pointing

While searching around the web, I found a USA today article regarding the Coronavirus:

At least eight strains of the coronavirus are making their way around the globe, creating a trail of death and disease that scientists are tracking by their genetic footprints.

While much is unknown, hidden in the virus’s unique microscopic fragments are clues to the origins of its original strain, how it behaves as it mutates, and which strains are turning into conflagrations while others are dying out thanks to quarantine measures.  

Huddled in once bustling and now almost empty labs, researchers who oversaw dozens of projects are instead focused on one goal: tracking the current strains of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that cause the illness COVID-19. (Weise, 2020)

What I am reading in various threads on Facebook is criticism and distrust of our administration.  Some of those comments condensed for the purpose of this reading are:

  • Cuomo admits to stockpile of ventilators not being distributed yet
  • The road to coronavirus hell was paved by evangelicals
  • Fauci crushes left’s narrative on Trump’s Easter ‘Deadline’

These are only the first few I came to this morning. 

While all of us are now corralled into our homes and restricted from elective activities that require leaving the home other than something that would be considered “necessary” it is this writer’s opinion that what we are in fact seeing is the first wave of cabin fever symptoms rearing its ugly head. 

With the onset of spring, most of us were geared towards heading outdoors.  We waited for baseball season; spring training for football; little league and softball start-ups; proms.  We were like race horses in the starting gate chomping at our bits waiting for that bell to sound.  Only as it did, the race was called off and we have been put back in the gate.

The big question for everyone is WHO IS TO BLAME?  Did the President (who was not known for his popularity to begin with) flub this by not responding fast enough? 

For my own case, I can say without hesitation that up until one week ago I was headed for NYC for a reunion.  It was not until I tried to contact others that I wanted to see while up for that event that I began hearing resistance to the idea because of this virus.  I was shocked!  I fully intended to go and thought “what is everyone so worried about?”

First, the reunion committee decided to postpone the date.  Next, the local schools where I live in Decatur, Alabama decided to shut down for the two weeks prior to the scheduled spring break in an effort to thwart off any epidemic that might sweep the schools.  Everyone was still pretty casual here.  Kids were treating this very much like a three-week spring break.  College students still flocked to Florida beaches with no one telling them differently.  Then, the other shoe fell, and the media was bombarding us with newsfeed of death tolls, ventilator shortages, unavailable beds in ICU’s, etc. I’m beginning to see that this is not just another flu season.  This is something we have NEVER lived through in my lifetime.

That being the case, we are now stir crazy, disappointed, frustrated and scared.  And with all this pent-up emotion, the question on the table is WHO DO WE BLAME?

Do we blame the Chinese wet market vendors?

At such markets, outdoor stalls are squeezed together to form narrow lanes, where locals and visitors shop for cuts of meat and ripe produce. A stall selling caged chickens may abut a butcher counter, where meat is chopped as nearby dogs watch hungrily. Some vendors hock hares, while seafood stalls display glistening fish and shrimp.

Wet markets put people and live and dead animals — dogs, chickens, pigs, snakes, civets, and more — in constant close contact. That makes it easy for zoonotic diseases to jump from animals to humans.

“Poorly regulated, live-animal markets mixed with illegal wildlife trade offer a unique opportunity for viruses to spill over from wildlife hosts into the human population,” the Wildlife Conservation Society said in a statement. (Woodward, 2020)

Do we blame the CDC?  The US Health and Human Services Agency?  After further digging on the internet I found yet another article that stated:

“A widely overlooked study conducted five years ago by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the United States might need as many as seven billion respirators in the long run to combat a worst-case spread of a severe respiratory outbreak such as COVID-19.” (Akpan, 2020)

If this is true, that predates the disbanding of the Office of Pandemic Response.

In the meantime, here is what I have going through my head:  Don’t take your eyes off the ball.  While we are all inconvenienced, pissed, being put in harms way or perhaps even stricken with this virus – is the elephant in the room what caused this – or is the elephant in the room, what can we do to stop this?

We all need to do what we can – and what we can do is this:

Stay Calm

Do as instructed and stay home unless imperative that we leave home

Remain within the confines of our community so as not to spread across communities

Help in any way that we can; make or donate masks (if you have them).  Help others with obtaining food that may be housebound for other reasons such as age or physical inability.  Prayer: pray for calm, pray for guidance, pray for strength, pray for your neighbor and pray for our people on the front lines who are taking the full weight of the brunt of this pandemic.

The time for finger-pointing is NOT now.  Do not waste what energy and resources you have beating the drum to stir the pot of anger when we are already upset.  There are two lanes of response here: positive and negative.  Consciously step into the positive lane and do good.  You can crucify someone later – when there’s time. 

Akpan, Nsikan, March 3, 2020, National Geographic, retrieved from the world wide web on March 28, 2020 from https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/2020/03/us-america-has-fraction-medical-supplies-it-needs-to-combat-coronavirus/#close 

Weise, Elizabeth, March 15, 2020, USA Today, retrieved from the world wide web on March 28, 2020 from https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/health/2020/03/14/coronavirus-updates-trump-may-get-tested-house-passes-relief-bill/5032571002/

Woodward, Aylin, February 26, 2020 retrieved from the world wide web on March 28, 2020 from https://www.businessinsider.com/wuhan-coronavirus-chinese-wet-market-photos-2020-1

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3 Comments

  1. Jane Reed on March 28, 2020 at 4:43 pm

    Well said!!! Thank you. We should all spread as much love and compassion as we can and then dig deeper and give a little more. Now is the time for community. Thank you dear lady for your input! Blessings



  2. MAUREEN Wiltsee on March 28, 2020 at 7:48 pm

    Well put



  3. Peggy Davis on March 29, 2020 at 8:11 am

    Finally, a clarion call that I hope sounds throughout the world!

    Good word!