A Winters Express opinion column
By Gerald Taylor
Special to the Express
A recent tally of family and friends who have tested positive for COVID-19 raises the alarm that we may have been too complacent in thinking that we are safe and secure in our home and circumstances. Deadly darts are grazing by.
In our immediate family there are 28 loved ones among the count limited to myself and Grams and our decedent children and grandchildren and one custodial child. It does not include great grandchildren or extended family. Of these 28 there are six who have tested positive over the course of the pandemic.
The youngest was 12 years of age at the time. Several were college students who had minor symptoms. Some were affected before the vaccine was available and some later. None required hospitalization. Normal activities were resumed after quarantines.
For ease of tracking the count of friends is limited to the pre-pandemic number of 80 or so regular attendees of a weekly worship service. It does not include neighbors or other friends scattered in various locations throughout the state and country. All of those included in the count reside within or nearby to Winters and Esparto.
Of these 80 people, approximately a dozen have admitted to having tested positive. Sadly, among this group, one mother passed away leaving behind a husband who was also stricken with the disease and several high school and college aged young adults.
Some of those affected were hospitalized. Some were ill prior to the availability of vaccines and some later. Some among the 80 original attendees are in favor of vaccinations and some are not. Some support wearing masks, a few do not. Some refuse to follow the advice of immunologists and the council and example of Church Leaders to both wear masks and be vaccinated. This divisiveness is reflected in part by the halving of worship attendance.
It seems that an enemy such as a killing virus that indiscriminately attacks people of every race and station in life would unite people to do common battle. Instead a division of consensus about vaccines and masks seems to run concurrent with strong and differing political views. Some say their freedom and rights are being trampled and words such as Nazism and Communism arise.
While I don’t understand or agree with many of these viewpoints I do respect the right of every individual to have a voice. Neither I nor any of my family or friends wishes any ill to befall another person irrespective of their views.
I am happy and content. It helps that I don’t read or listen to the news.
But the old saying, “Ignorance is bliss” is not a good excuse for not addressing important matters.
Intuitively I sense that a pack ‘united in heart and mind’ is far better off than a pack divided.