Editor’s note: This letter is by Josephine Katz, a concerned Vermonter.
America has a new look. Even on a sunny, spring day its residential streets sport only a bicycle or two. Downtown, stores are shuttered. Such cars as there are seem to meander about. Is it a nuclear holocaust that has sent everyone indoors where they are apparently awaiting a slow death?
Well, it isn’t a nuclear holocaust but it might as well be, because everyone seems to have agreed that life as they knew it is not worth living any longer.
“I want America back!” Too bad, lady, a virus that is very contagious is coming to get you and your neighbors and you’d better succumb to the new protocols. Personal rights or, for that matter, responsibilities? Not for you, lady, and you must make sure you report those who act as though they still have them.
Yes, it is a very contagious virus, from which 99.9% of those infected survive. And it has closed down the entire American economy.
One of the early goals — to “flatten the curve” so the hospitals not be overwhelmed — has been achieved. But what is the price we’ve paid for our concentration on a virus? Hospitals across the country have closed for lack of income because patients have been barred from getting their hip replacements, colonoscopies, chemotherapy — all interventions that could have extended lives. Who is the winner there?
Doesn’t someone want to question the “experts” about what their policies have wrought, not to mention the errors of their models? When businesses shutter for two months, when livelihoods are permanently destroyed, there is great suffering. People beset by these calamities die before their time, as do older people cooped up in their rooms for weeks on end, unable to connect with their families.
Fear seems to have gripped us and we are unable to find the courage to move through it. We fear a virus, so much that we can’t question the policies supposedly aimed to deal with it. We fear being told we are selfish or cold-hearted.
It is interesting that it is especially those of lower income, those who cannot work from home on their computers, who are suffering most. Could that be the reason the “experts” aren’t open to changing their policies?
There are so many questions to be asked by those who are curious and restless. The ultimate one is the hardest to ask: Is the evidence now conclusive that America is no longer the “home of the brave”?