Hypocrisy Rages On
June 25, 2020
Here it is June and while the potency of COVID-19 has waned somewhat, the hypocrisy roars on.
There is good news in that so many vaccines are being developed, Dr. Anthony Fauci thinks one of them will surely work by the end of the year.
UPMC says that it has had fewer and fewer hospitalizations from the virus and the numbers seeking any treatment keep going down. Dr. Marc Siegel explained on Fox News why this is true. He said that a virus wants to live, so it does not want to kill its hosts. Therefore, the strength will diminish.
Meanwhile, some of the general public acts as though they have bumped their heads. For instance, cancelling the agriculture parade in Martinsburg seems like overkill. The parade is composed largely of individuals riding farm machinery. There are groups of people who walk together, but they don't walk arm in arm. The groups of people are often families who live together, eat together, even sleep together.
As for the people watching the parade, I don't think the event is usually so crowded that folks sit on top of one another. It is never as well attended as a Saturday afternoon at Lowes. I believe a parade would be the perfect event to practice social distancing, if you feel it is necessary.
The announcement I saw said to please attend the Christmas parade. What makes anyone so certain it will be better at Christmas? Everyone seems to get the assumption that if they just wait a little longer it will go away. Nope, it isn't going anywhere. It is going to stick around looking for hosts and we simply have to learn to live with it, wash our hands, don't touch our faces, and don't spit on each other.
So many rules
There are so many rules I don't understand. For instance, why was it not safe for beauty parlors open on June 4, but it was okay on June 5? Why were beauty salons closed at all? They practice cleanliness in every sense of the word. They work with soap and water. If the technician wore a mask and the client wore a mask the problem should be solved.
Instead, we were expected to walk around looking like ragged scarecrows for two months while the governor, Dr. Fauci, Dr. Birx, and the rest of the gang were obviously getting haircuts somewhere. Our state secretary of health appeared to be abiding by the rules. I was fortunate to have a neighbor/friend who knew how to do hair come to my rescue.
The numbers are also hypocritical. Why could a group of 25 meet in the yellow phase, but not 26? Was that 26th person guaranteed to have the virus?
It totally mystified me why the little gift shop in town could not be open, but it was okay for Walmart. The gift shop only gets a few customers at a time and spreading them out would be easy enough.
Then, in the midst of a medical crisis, doctors and nurses were being laid off. If you didn't have COVID-19 or symptoms of COVID-19, heaven help you if you were not feeling well from some other reason.
My son experienced firsthand some of the medical hypocrisy. Not being one to cower in a corner, he and his wife had flown to Long Beach from Albuquerque for a weekend of sailing. He figured sailing with his wife on the ocean was about as much social distancing as one could expect. He was quite pleased with the precautions taken by their hotel to prevent any transferring of the disease. Son and wife were not careless and took hygiene precautions while still enjoying themselves.
About 10 days following the excursion, a pain in his wrist necessitated a visit to a physician. "Have you been anywhere?" was the question.
So, my son explained his recent trip to the West Coast. "Oh, we are sorry but we cannot see you until you have been back for at least two weeks," he was told. They took his temperature and told him he almost had a fever. Now, my question is, how does one almost have a fever?
Normal temperature is 98.6. However, some people run a normal temperature of 99 and some always run cool at 98 or even lower. I think it would be difficult to determine who does and who does not have a fever and especially someone who ALMOST has one. That would be similar to being a little bit pregnant.
I grew up in the days of whooping cough, polio, measles, mumps, and all the childhood diseases that, because of vaccinations, are no longer with us. I barely escaped the smallpox era. As I recall, I was vaccinated at about age 4 because there was an outbreak and a vaccine was available.
However, I do not ever remember people hiding in their basements because they feared they might become ill. While COVID-19 has a death rate which jumps around, it seems to have stabilized near 0.025. Polio could have easily killed you or crippled you for life. I think many died from smallpox.
Looting and rioting
There is also the craziness of the looting and rioting that occurred when George Floyd was unjustly killed by a policeman in Minnesota. Floyd was not exactly a model citizen but certainly did not deserve to die over a $20 crime.
So, arm-in-arm, thousands and thousands of protestors took to the streets touching each other, probably spitting on each other because they somehow thought this was going to bring Floyd back to life. Or, was it an excuse to get free stuff? I tend to think the latter.
Meanwhile as all this madness takes place, I continue to be pretty much quarantined in my backyard which is truly my happy place. I don't hover there because I am so afraid of catching the virus. Instead, I simply have no place to go because all of the powers-that-be keep cancelling everything. Everything except riots and protests, but I find those far more dangerous than parades or picnics.
I can only hope saner minds will soon prevail.
Editor's Note: While the Herald strongly prefers to let our columnists speak with their own voices, we must dispute some aspects of this column.
For one, most health experts do not see a waning of the potency of the coronavirus. As of June 23, health officials in several states were concerned about signs of the virus spreading at an increasing rate.
Second, while we too are fans of annual Ag Parade in Martinsburg, we must dispute the assertion that spectators don't crowd together. While they may not sit "on top of one another," they do crowd in much closer than six feet apart along the parade route. This might be made worse this year by a shorter parade route.
Last, regarding the death rate from COVID-19, this is what the U.S. CDC has to say about COVID-19 mortality as of June 23:
Based on death certificate data, the percentage of deaths attributed to pneumonia, influenza or COVID-19 (PIC) decreased from 11.4% during week 23 to 7.1% during week 24 but remained above baseline. This is the eighth week of a declining percentage of deaths due to PIC, but this may change as more death certificates are processed, particularly for recent weeks.