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To heal the divide

Dave Ferry

Before anyone starts yelling at me, I promise you I am not being flippant about a potentially-serious worldwide pandemic. People seem to be falling between one of two camps — those who lean toward keyword ‘potential,’ and those who lean toward keyword ‘serious.’

Whichever way you choose to roll will ultimately be on you.

You might come to find you overreacted and ended up with more toilet paper than you can use in your entire lifetime. Maybe you didn’t take it seriously before someone you cared about became ill (Tom Hanks). Perhaps you’ve washed your hands until they were raw and duct taped them to your sides so as not to touch your face.

My point is, it’s not like everything suddenly just up and went bananas. It’s difficult to pinpoint the exact moment *cough* (2016?) *cough* but it does sort of feel as though we’ve been in training for something very much like this one crisis at a time for many years now.

Something was bound to come along and force us all to reconsider our beliefs. Whether it’s by gaining a better understanding of mental illness, or opening our minds to the science of climate change, we have all had our biases challenged in one way or another very recently.

Coronavirus has become the ultimate challenge for all of us. You’re at risk simply by denying the science. If you’ve been depressed and feeling guilty about staying inside, guess what? You’re an expert on social distancing.

Even our President has been forced to make an uncharacteristic pivot from dismissing everything as a “hoax” to walking back and declaring a national emergency.

If you haven’t figured it out by now, the thing that could potentially wipe out society doesn’t climb walls or live in some far away country. It could come from anywhere at anytime without warning.

You cannot deny the irony that the only way to heal the divide in this country may be to force us all to give each other some space to be safe.

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