Tag Archives: pandemic

We are sinking ever lower

Have we really devolved into a society that applauds a candidate who says a medical official hired to guide the nation out of a killer pandemic should be stood in front of a firing squad and executed?

Never mind. I know the answer. It is yes. It sickens me to my core.

John Benett is chair of the Oklahoma Republican Party. He told a cheering crowd that Dr. Anthony Fauci should be shot by a firing squad. The worst part? The crowd cheered and clapped at the congressional candidate’s hideous message!

The Huffington Post reported:

“We’re fighting communist Democrats, establishment RINOs!” Bennett ranted in a video that Right Wing Watch shared online Tuesday and has now gone viral.

“We’re fighting against a system that stole the election in 2020 and nobody had been held accountable,” he continued, parroting former President Donald Trump’s baseless election fraud claims. “We’re in a war with bureaucrats that have forced vaccine mandates on us, mask mandates on us.”

Oh my goodness.

“In a war”? Is this clown serious? Yeah. He is.

Republicans Cheer As Congressional Candidate Demands Fauci’s Execution By Firing Squad (msn.com)

There is not a single thing I can say that is going to sink into the thick skulls of those who buy into that bullsh**.  I am left only to condemn in the strongest terms possible the kind of hateful demagoguery that has become the norm within what used to be known as a great political party.


Are we overplaying COVID?

The thought occurred to me today as I was visiting by phone with a dear friend and former colleague: I am starting to wonder if the media aren’t overstating and overplaying these occurrences of COVID-19 positive tests among celebrities.

My friend, who is married to an Amarillo physician, didn’t disagree. I frame it in those terms because she didn’t precisely embrace the notion. She and her husband have seen their share of heartache and tragedy among her husband’s clientele.

To my point … which is that we seem to be entering a new stage of this pandemic in which “testing positive” is just, well, part of the new normal.

Texas Democratic candidate for governor Beto O’Rourke tests positive and the media are all over it; same with Vice President Kamala Harris.

They both report they are fine. They have “mild symptoms.” They’ll isolate for a few days and then be back at whatever it is they do during the day. The same can be said for practically everyone these days who is listed as testing positive for the virus.

I am not selling short the consequence of getting sick with this pandemic. A member of my family became desperately ill shortly after Christmas 2020. I also have lost several friends who have died from the disease. That was then. These days, though, the treatments are vastly improved and with more Americans becoming vaccinated, the instances of serious illness from the disease appear to be waning.

You remember when becoming infected with HIV/AIDS was a virtual death sentence, yes? What’s happened there? People are living long and fruitful lives with the virus that once delivered death with stunning and ruthless efficiency.

I am thinking at this moment that I am not going to get overly worked up over reports that someone in the news has contracted the COVID-19 virus. It is becoming part of living each day.


Go ahead and sue, Mr. POTUS

President Biden’s administration has filed an appeal to overturn a federal judge’s ruling that tossed out the mask mandate ordered by the president as the nation struggles to contain the COVID pandemic and the virus’s assorted variants.

Go ahead and appeal all you want, Mr. President.

My wife and I are going to keep masking up. We’re going to keep maintaining our distance from strangers. We’re going to keep washing our hands frequently.

The judge, based in Florida, tossed out the mandate citing some nutty notion that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention acted outside of its legal authority. Federal transportation authorities then removed the mandate on public transportation systems.

The president, though, is proceeding with his appeal. Fine. Go for it.

It won’t matter one damn bit to my wife and me. We’re going to keep doing what we can to prevent getting sick with the virus. We’re vaccinated to the hilt. That’s not enough, apparently. Masks are going to offer us protection. I’m all in on wearing masks.


Masks become a political weapon

There once was a time when the government told us to do something to protect our health, most of us would comply in relative silence. Few of us griped out loud.

No more, folks!

A federal judge this week overturned a mandate from the federal government to require airline passengers to wear masks to protect themselves against the COVID-19 virus. The Transportation Safety Administration has just decided it won’t require passengers to mask up before boarding planes.

I will go to my grave failing to grasp what in the world has happened to us. I will wonder forever and ever why we have begun fighting back with such anger at government’s desire to keep us safe from a disease that has killed nearly 1 million Americans.

Sigh …

It’s not entirely the “American way” to fight these efforts. Sure, we are a nation born from dissent against tyranny. Now we hear from those on the far-right wing of our political divide that “tyranny” has returned to government. It comes in the form of government ordering us to wear masks.

I scratch my noggin over that anger. Maybe I am just too passive. Some of you might think I’m a patsy, that I don’t stand up for my “rights” against an intrusive government.

I simply just comply with these mandates understanding that none of them lasts forever.

That anger has spread to visceral antagonism against medical professionals who advise the president on these matters. I have lost count of the rants I have read on social media from right-wing politicians who vow to prosecute Dr. Anthony Fauci over alleged “crimes” he supposedly has committed.

Crimes? What the … ?

It’s a new day, all right.


They want this guy back?

Just think: a lot of Americans want to see this guy returned to the office he denigrated, disrespected and devalued damn near each day he occupied it.

I saw this social media meme and wanted to share it here. I don’t know its source; it doesn’t matter. I believe its content, although I need to put a couple of the barbs in some proper context.

The bit about “killing more Americans than Hitler” and losing “5 million jobs” is attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic, which wasn’t entirely Donald Trump’s fault. Yes, he did downplay the seriousness of it as the killer virus began its path of death and destruction through the nation and around the world. That helped contribute to the calamity that befell the nation in 2020 and 2021.

And yet, millions of Americans continue to say he “told it like it is.” No, he didn’t. He told it the way he wanted us to believe it to be.

I should add that the 45th POTUS also told an estimated 35,000 lies, put many of our international alliances in jeopardy, mocked people with disabilities and prisoners of war and — this is the best one — became a Vladimir Putin enabler by refusing to admit the Russian tyrant is a killer and by refusing to condemn him for interfering in our electoral process.

Puh-leeeze …


Annual COVID vaccine? Sure thing!

If the nation’s medical pros are right that we’re going to be consigned to getting annual vaccines to fend off the COVID virus, well, I’m all for it.

I keep hearing that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the president’s team of medical advisers are telling us that the virus won’t be exterminated, that we might have to get the vaccines each year. We do it with the flu, correct?

If that’s the case, then I am totally OK with that.

My wife and I this week obtained our second booster vaccine. We went to our CVS pharmacy in Princeton, Texas. We were in and out in just a few minutes. The nurse who stuck the needles into our arms was pleasant. Why, she even told us we didn’t have to wait 15 minutes in case of ill effect from the vaccine; “I just have to advise you,” she said.

This appears to be in our future. Whether it’s a long-term routine remains to be determined. Whether it’s long term, medium term or short term doesn’t bother me in the least.

We are both prepared to do what our government says it will take to protect us against the virus.


No ‘right’ to endanger others

Ted Cruz, bless his stone-cold heart, is once again on the wrong side of a compelling national public policy, which happens to be the idea of the government forcing Americans to get vaccinated against a killer disease.

The Republican junior U.S. senator from Texas has joined the “People’s Convoy” of truckers seeking an end to government COVID-19 vaccine mandates.

According to the Texas Tribune:

“If you make the choice to take the COVID vaccine, God bless you. That’s your right, and you have every right to do that,” said Cruz, who is vaccinated. “But if you make the choice not to take the vaccine, that is also your right.”

Health officials and medical experts have consistently said that masks can prevent the spread of COVID-19 and that getting the vaccine and subsequent boosters can reduce the chances of being hospitalized or dying from the virus. They also cite vaccines as key to slowing the pandemic.

Sigh …


It’s no one’s “right” to put others in potentially mortal danger by not wearing a mask, maintaining social distance and getting vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus.

I am delighted as the dickens to see hospitalizations from the pandemic declining. So are deaths. Infections, too. I am one American, though, who is willing to do whatever the government requires me to do to avoid getting sick, or getting my loved ones sick, or sickening total strangers.

If only other total strangers felt the same way in protecting my loved ones and me from their stupidity.

Ted Cruz has joined the ranks of the stupid cabal.


Happy pandemic ‘anniversary’

Gosh, it’s been two years since the global killer virus pandemic arrived in North Texas, which is what the TV news anchors are telling us today.

Do I wish everyone a “happy anniversary”? Nah. I’ll pass on that one.

I will take note of the date the media are marking by stating that it has taken us two full years since the virus struck its first victim in this part of the world to get it under control … at least that is everyone’s hope.

The World Health Organization (which we have since rejoined since Joe Biden became president), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the United Nations and a slew of other medical experts are saying the “pandemic” has given way to an “endemic.” I think that is their way of saying that the coronavirus — aka COVID 19 — is here to stay, possibly forever, but that we’re going to have deal with it the way we deal with the flu and other common infectious diseases.

It will be my sincere hope that in the future we can wish ourselves a “happy anniversary” to mark the date that the COVID 19 virus is deemed no longer crucial to the way we conduct our lives.

I’m all for celebrating that day.


Masks give you fits? C’mon!

The world is watching a drama play out in real time, with human beings suffering untold fear and anxiety as foreign troops invade their country, seeking to take it over and subjugate them to lives that no one can anticipate.

Meanwhile, many thousands of miles away in the United States of America, other human beings are bitching about — and this is rich — having to wear masks to protect them and others against a virus that has killed more than 900,000 Americans and something north of 5 million people around the world.

Politicians here are making lots of hay about mask wearing and social distancing. They complain about “totalitarian” government mandates. They vow to end them. Crowds of Americans cheer them on and vilify doctors and assorted scientific experts for suggesting we mask up and keep our distance to protect ourselves.

Oh, back to the real crisis developing, the one in Ukraine.

It is good, therefore, to put certain matters in their proper perspective. This is my way of saying that Americans ought to stop bitching about wearing a mask and turn our attention to the real terror facing our fellow citizens of the world.


Still pulling for POTUS

No one who reads this blog regularly will be surprised to read that I want President Joe Biden to succeed as he trudges through his term in office. I hope it is just his first term … but that remains an open question, to be crystal clear.

I am not going to presume that the president will even seek a second term, let alone that he’ll win election to another four years in the White House.

He came into office promising to (a) end the pandemic, (b) restore the “soul of the nation” and (c) get our economy moving again. I am going to give the president credit for achieving one of those ambitious goals and part of another one.

The economy is stronger than many of us seem to believe it is. Polling suggests Americans remain concerned about the economic track we’re on. I am unclear as to why there remains such uncertainty and angst. I know about inflationary pressures; we’re feeling them in our North Texas home, too. The job numbers continue to sparkle, unemployment continues to decline and we’re buying more goods and services.

The national soul restoration remains a work in progress. Sadly, we’re still being infected with disinformation peddled by Biden’s immediate predecessor. The Big Lie still has legs, although most of its limbs have been cut off by the judicial system that keeps undercutting POTUS 45’s efforts to undermine the integrity of our electoral system. Biden, though, has sought to return the United States to its role as leader of alliances and protector of civil liberties around the world. He’s done well in that regard, dispensing with the gratuitous criticism of our allies.

Yes, the pandemic remains a problem. But its drag on our national psyche is dwindling right along with the infection rates, the hospitalizations and the deaths from COVID infection. States are relaxing their mandates on masks and other precautions. I am not heeding Texas’s relaxation efforts. We are still masking up and are still keeping our distance from those we do not know.

I am continuing to pull for President Biden to keep up the fight and to score more successes as he moves along through his term. You know already he wasn’t my first choice to defeat the man who held the office for four previous years. Then he became the Democratic Party nominee in 2020 … and I was all in.

remain all in. Keep the faith, Mr. President.