It’s been a while (too long) since my last blog post. My colleague, Khalid Ali, who manages this website constantly reminds me that I owe him a blog post. So, I promised Khalid that I will send him a post at least every other week — if not more often.

My only excuse for the delay in sending a post is that I was hoping we could all move on from the COVID pandemic. Unfortunately, the Delta variant appears to have other plans, as the number of cases has substantially increased in the past several weeks around the world.

So, first of all, I pray that you and your family and friends are safe and healthy. This has been an extremely difficult period, especially for the elderly and less fortunate members of society. Despite the continued uncertainty, I am optimistic that if we all work together (and I mean ALL of us as a global community), we will get through this crisis and see the bright light of day at the end of this “tunnel.”

In order to make progress defeating the COVID virus, once again, I think it will require all of us to have a BALANCED PERSPECTIVE, to take the time to understand all sides of the story, and to “seek to understand before we are understood.” Unfortunately, right now, many people are not listening to one another, and folks are lining up as “Vaxxers or Anti-vaxxers” and “Mask-wearers or Non-mask Wearers.” One thing that is clear to me is that no one has all the answers. There are a lot of opinions floating around, but many of these opinions are not based on FACTS. For example, some people who are vaccinated cannot understand why people would choose not to be vaccinated. I am vaccinated, and while I would personally prefer that everyone be vaccinated, that is not my decision or authority to make. We live in a free society (or at least I hope we do). I have taken the time to UNDERSTAND the view of some of those not vaccinated. Some have medical conditions that make taking the vaccine a significant health risk. Others are legitimately concerned that the vaccines were rapidly manufactured and are not yet fully approved by the FDA other than for emergency purposes.

With that said, I do have a few opinions. If you choose not to be vaccinated (and I believe that is your right in a free society), PLEASE let people know you are not vaccinated so they can take the appropriate personal precautions to protect themselves. Yes, you have the right to choose what is best for YOU, but you don’t have the right to get others sick. This discussion reminds me of the debates I had with folks 30 years ago regarding whether it was “right” to tell people that they could not smoke in restaurants. Well, my opinion was you can smoke when you are alone and not putting others at risk.

I am not a doctor, but I loved the three steps we were all taught when this crisis started 18 months ago:

  1. Wear a mask
  2. Stay 6 feet apart
  3. Wash your hands often

That seems to be a reasonable set of recommendations. In fact, it seems like common sense, and as my students know, whenever anyone mentions “COMMON SENSE,” I always refer to what I think is a Mark Twain quote (but some folks attribute it to Voltaire): ”Everything is common sense. The problem is that common sense is not common.” 😉

Best wishes, and feel free to let me know your opinions!

Photo by Adam Nieścioruk on Unsplash