We have been in the middle of a pandemic since March, we are 5.5 months in and things are worse now than they have been. I know that by saying anything about this pandemic, masks, or not gathering with other people will be political. And frankly, I don’t care at this point. Me writing about an ongoing pandemic is not political but our society has managed to everything into a right or left, red or blue, Republican or Democratic box. However, science, like faith, does not fit into any of those boxes.
Every day is a new experience in this COVID pandemic. We continue to learn more about the virus, who our essential workers in the economy actually are and who our economy is failing on a daily basis. It is important to note that COVID did not create many of the problems we are experiencing right now but it did uncover them for all of us to see. Our structual inconsistancies and how much of our economy is carried by the folks in our economy working paycheck to paycheck.
I work at a church, in case you don’t know, and we have been doing outdoor worship for a month and a half. Personally I love it and think this should be a recurring summertime thing. Others won’t come because worship has to happen inside the building, and that is their prerogative. I don’t agree with it but it is their opinion. I’ve been a long time believer in church happening where 2 or more gather together, we can bicker back and forth over what Jesus does and doesn’t say about a number of hot topic issues but here He actually said this. (Matthew 18:20)
Whether that is in a coffee shop (Pre COVID), outside, or a live stream on YouTube. Whether we gather virtually or physically distant from one another, Jesus is there. Always. I may not be the best singer in the church, or in the state of Colorado but I find singing to be incredibly moving during worship and singing outside on Sunday mornings with the sun shining and the wind blowing is a whole-body worship experience.
Believe what you will about the media, I choose to get information regarding this pandemic from public health officials, straight from the source so to speak. El Paso County Public Health reports numbers daily, and we look at the John Hopkins COVID dashboard as well. No politics just data. And if data is too political then I literally don’t know what to tell you.
At the writing of this post, 139,000 Americans have died from this pandemic that is more than the number of soldiers who died in World War 1. How long until we reach the number of Americans that died in World War 2? And an updated estimated 720,000 died in the American Civil War. Will that many people die in the US in 2020 from this pandemic? (116,000 WW1 & 291,000 WW2, Source)
Masks apparently are a political statement now as well. Whether or not they “work” is not the issue, nothing substitutes for merely staying home and not interacting with people. And since no one wants to return to stay at home orders, and businesses want to serve their customers it is up to all of us to wear the mask. #MASKUP
I get it masks are a pain to wear, hard to breathe in, and just one more thing you have to remember before running out the door. Trust me, I don’t like wearing it either. It’s not exactly the fashion accessory trend I thought we’d see in 2020, but this year is full of exciting surprises. And as of a few weeks ago Colorado instituted a Mask Mandate much to the relief of my husband who works in retail and sees so many people.
The idea is simple, you want businesses to remain open? WEAR THE MASK.
Consider wearing a mask a visible way of loving your neighbor. Other ways that we love our neighbors; we don’t drive drunk, properly dispose of your trash, keep your dog on a leash, follow the speed limit, wear seatbelts, don’t smoke inside buildings, and in 2020 we wear a mask.
You may not agree with me. That is fine, you have that right (Although, I think you are wrong). But so long as the Public Health data shows an increase risk for this virus and so long as I and my husband continue to work with others outside our family group we will take all the precautions necessary and do our best to slow the spread of this virus to protect the vulnerable among us. I don’t know who the vulnerable people are in your life but I know who they are in mine and I’ll do what it takes to protect them.
At the worst, we wear these silly masks over our nose and mouths for no reason, at best we slow the spread of a deadly virus.