Sunday, May 17, 2020

Day 66 of Nat'l Emergency: Voices from Facebook

Almost every day it seems national and local TV newscasts illuminate instances of gratitude toward essential workers. Very heartwarming, albeit repetitive.

Don’t get me wrong. Nurses, doctors, healthcare workers, teachers, policemen, firemen, EMTs, transit workers, supermarket staff, meat and chicken processing plant employees deserve our thanks and respect for putting their lives on the line so that the quarantined can enjoy fresh food, protection and treatment should coronavirus invade our shelter.

I wonder, though, how long-lasting that appreciation will be. When the pandemic subsides and we return to what will pass as normalcy, will we again be stingy when it comes to paying these civil servants and critical industry workers a wage representative of what they mean to our “civilized” existence? 

I sincerely hope not. Yes, it would cost more in taxes to fund salary increases. But haven’t we learned during these last three months the importance and selflessness of these “heroes”? 

There will be many changes to the former status quo once the pandemic runs its course, though some experts are predicting it remain with us for months, if not years. A more equitable salary structure should be at the top of our To Do list.

Naturally, not everyone will agree with me. I thought I’d share with you some point-counterpoint thoughts I found on Facebook today regarding COVID-19 and the concept of quarantining for the greater good. You choose which best fits your psyche:

From Kevin Bain: “No more masks. Any business that tells me to put on a mask (Whole Foods or Lomo Alto) in Dallas will get told to kiss my Corona ass and will lose my business forever. It’s time to stop this BULLSHIT. Do I have to show the lame security guard outside of a ghetto store my CV19 test results? I will show him my Glock 21 shooting range results. With Hornady hollow points. Pricey ammo, but worth it in this situation. They have reached the limit. I have more power than they do…..they just don’t know it yet.”

Derek Utley put a picture of George Washington with his pithy comment: “It’s not illegal to open your business. It’s illegal that it is forced to be closed.”

From Nathan H. Rubin: “In retrospect, we probably should have been prepared for the callousness of the ‘re-open people. They didn’t care about kids thrown in cages, students shot in schools, families going bankrupt from medical bills…Whey did we expect them to care about COVID19 victims?”

Matt Haig wrote: “Yes lockdown poses its own mental health challenges. But can we please stop pretending our former world of long working hours, stressful commutes, hectic crowds, shopping centres, infinite choice, mass consumerism, air pollution and 24/7 everything was a mental health utopia.”

Cyrus McQueen posted: “I’m not risking my life around a buncha people in the park…I’m not risking it at a beach, restaurant or the movies…But best believe I will risk it all on November 3rd to vote this motherfucker out…I’ll wear a damn hazmat suit if I have to…”