Letter: Silver lining?

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Editor of the Reformer,

Attempting to retain a positive attitude, I can believe that there is a silver lining to the COVID-19 pandemic. For one thing, we are rediscovering the scientific method and giving science the respect it deserves and has recently lost. Dr. Fauci and his team have been the voice of reason and factual information in an otherwise leaderless government. That is the second thing. We may finally be awakening to the absolute necessity for an intelligent, intellectually organized, knowledgeable and compassionate President, one who has the sense to listen to those who know more than he/she does, to devise a plan, to speak the truth and to lead for the good of the country, not for his/her own gain. And third is our sudden dazzling awareness of the global community to which we belong. National borders mean nothing to a virus, nor do the color of the host's skin or their religion, gender or economic status. We are the human family that inhabits this glorious planet and we are one enormous village. If we do not look out for each other, the virus will continue to cull our herd.

The most surprising benefit of the viral invasion is the opportunity to reconnect with nature, with the outdoors, with the beauty that surrounds us. Now there is time, and space, and quiet. Now we can go for a walk, listen to the new sounds as the birds return for the summer, watch the plants emerge from the recently frozen ground. The wonders are everywhere, safe, and waiting to be enjoyed. Parents scurrying to figure out what to do with their children who have no school to go to, can realize the possibilities for learning are present everywhere in our natural world. Learning about the bodies we inhabit is scholarly fodder for everyone from toddler to elder. One need only step outside to find a host of questions wanting answers: why is the sky blue, how does a seed become a plant, what is that formation of stars called, who named it, and why? The potential is infinite, no classroom needed.

I know this virus is dangerous, deadly for some, but let me remind, that there are many deadly things in our world, COVID-19 being especially frightening because it is such an unknown. The scientists will figure it out and another virus or other disaster will take its place. Fear is a healthy temporary response unless it paralyzes us. We know what to do right now. Let's just do it and remind ourselves every time we feel that tightening in our gut, that this will pass.

Judith Petry

Westminster, March 19

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