I love you all, fellow humans: similarities and differences aside. I love you for expressing your beliefs and wanting what’s best for everyone because it means that you love your fellow humans, too.
So let’s strive to be civil, supportive, and empathetic to the fears we all have. Let’s reference reputable sources when sharing information on social media and respect dissenting opinions by avoiding polarizing rhetoric. We are in this together and I will fight for you and yours regardless of whether or not we agree. Because you are my fellow human. And I am yours.
There’s an overwhelming spread of [mis]information right now, and it’s hard to know what to believe. There are myths masquerading as science and science discredited as political strategy. And every “side” is to blame. Is COVID-19 a political weapon? I don’t know. But I do know I’ll do my best to consider your stance, whatever it may be. And regardless of the origins or purpose of this virus (or lack of purpose if it’s just a tragic, organically-borne disease), it is still real.
People are still dying. For real. People are still scared. For real. And people are still relying on all of us to do our part to take it seriously for the health of our fellow humans. For real.
Please don’t patronize those who prefer to play it safe. Please wear a mask in public places—even though you have the right not to—because it’s the respectful and pragmatic thing to do. Stay home because you should. And if you don’t, let it be out of necessity instead of a desire to protest something you feel violates your civil liberties. Our rights exist to protect our well-being. OUR well-being. Collectively. And while one person’s stance may not match yours, neither is any more or less valuable.
Yes, our economy is suffering; it’s a tragic byproduct of this disease. And I’m angry that our government doesn’t have systems in place to support those most impacted. But our economy will no doubt suffer even further without healthy citizens to support it. If we put the cart before the horse, there will be devastatingly-fewer consumers left to revive what remains.
Let’s all acknowledge this virus is a reality and do our best to curb its spread now. If you really believe this is a conspiracy tactic to assume political control, then it’s even more imperative that we prevent its impact. And when—and only when—it’s safe to do so, I’ll stand alongside you on the frontlines to make our voices heard. But we must first ensure there are enough of us left to speak when it’s time.