Season 1 / Post 125
I am getting tired of people walking toward me only to swerve out of the way as if I am a leper. I am not talking about inside a confined or crowded area but outside on a sidewalk or parking lot. We have created an aura of fear that in fifteen months has become part of our DNA. I am using the pronoun we to refer to society and not to indicate a group for us to agree or disagree. This emotional state will make it extremely difficult to return to a degree of normalcy in our lives. What we have created is a dividing line where on one side lives the folks who crave normalcy. On the other side reside the folks who may never drop their masks. These are the folks that need the comfort of extra protection for them to navigate life. When we need to unite the people of this country, we have another reason to divide.
I believe that the blame for this new division lies in the hands of the Government and the CDC. The message from both has been inconsistent, confusing, and, in some cases, simply not the truth. The Government and CDC have destroyed their credibility at a time we need them most. Masks work, don’t work. Vaccines protect you, still wear a mask. The CDC says masks are no longer needed while the President wears a mask everywhere he appears.
So now we come to the future of mask mandates. The Federal and most state governments have already removed most orders requiring masks, especially if you are vaccinated. Towns, especially in our area of New Hampshire, are reluctant to release the populace from their control. They realize they have created a neutered community drunk on fear. Don’t let them up when you were able to knock us down so easily. I spoke to a local board member yesterday who told me the government must protect us from ourselves. As long as there are still people who have not taken the shots, the local government must continue to mandate masks. We ended our conversation agreeing to disagree. I’m afraid I have to disagree with any government involving themselves in the decision-making of their electorate.
This morning I stopped into the local convenience store. Having owned one like it in my past, I know how you can get the pulse of a community at the corner store. The manager removed the protective plexiglass from the checkout area and felt the heat from some of her patrons. On the contrary, I thanked her for her courage. This dichotomy is the monster we have created—the wants on one side and the cants on the other. She is holding firm and will probably be strong enough to withstand scrutiny.
It is unfortunate that every issue in America now breaks down into black and white. There is no genial conversation or debate, just jousting. We are going to have to arrive at a place of acceptance. People will return to normal, and some never will. That has become painfully obvious. Both sides will need to accept the other side’s thinking. No government official should coerce either side to bend to pressure.
I will be watching our local Select Board closely next week. I fear that they will flex their power one more time. I do not believe that businesses that want to have people masked in their establishments require the local government to enforce that policy for them. Too many members of our Board agree with the thinking of these businesses. People are tired of this control, and I can see repercussions. My only hope is that I am wrong or that reaction is peaceful. Stay tuned.