Credit: George Danby / BDN

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Turkeys in the barnyard

It may be that sociologists understand — I certainly don’t — how it is that there seems always to be a sizable portion of the population given to panic. Whatever the cause, they are apt at any moment to take up some cockamamie notion and stampede, like turkeys in a barnyard.

We’ve had witches in Salem, Reds under the bed and satanic ritual abuse of children in schools and daycare, among other shameful episodes. They are always eventually exposed for what they are, but not before innocent people are hounded, rendered unemployable, or even commit suicide. For a few years in the late 1940s into the early 1950s, the sane part of the country had to put up with Joe McCarthy, an egotistical, ambitious, hateful and profoundly mediocre man who left his name attached to an -ism and an era, both pejoratives. He lied his way to great prominence for a time and destroyed a great many lives and careers before drinking himself to death.

As transparently evil and destructive as he was, he had his followers. Those in the general populace were merely excitable and deluded; those in Congress were cynical graspers of power who aided and abetted without thought of the common good. Those voting turkeys were too tempting to resist. I can’t think why all this comes to mind today.

Roberts McHenry

Greenbush

A sad state of affairs

I have been an emergency nurse for many years and have never thought of myself or any of my healthcare partners as dispensable until now. When people are asked for the simple effort of wearing a face covering, it is beyond frustration to hear it being met with, “It’s not a law or “It’s about my personal freedom.” Imagine, hearing instead the narrative of “I am glad to have something to do to keep myself and others alive and well.”

Choosing not to wear a face covering is not only disrespectful, it places little value on the lives of doctors, nurses, EMTs, CNAs, MAs, housekeepers, maintenance, pharmacists, radiology, lab staff, switchboard and all others who work in healthcare. Directly and indirectly, face covering refusal threatens the lives of everyone.

Healthcare workers are physically and mentally exhausted and are becoming ill and even dying. Still, they are expected to be there tirelessly, bringing expertise, compassion and empathy. As long as they can, they show up 24/7!

I think those individuals choosing no face covering and no safe distancing will expect the highest level of care available should they become ill with the virus. The idea that their selfish choices will increase the risk for those choosing to care for them — and result in reducing resources for all — seems to escape their consciousness.

I am discouraged to think wearing a face covering and safely distancing is just too much to ask of some people while expecting all in healthcare to put their lives on the line seems reasonable. This is indeed a sad state of affairs.

Judy Street

Retired Registered Nurse

Brewer

Nothing else going on in the world

In today’s world I find it difficult to see how our citizens manage to face the day knowing that in their eyes that the Mark Trail comic strip is not up to their standards. Let’s forget about coronavirus, the Washington D.C. circus, children going hungry, the homeless, the issues in Somalia, Venezuela and Georgia.

So let’s hop out of bed with a stiff lip, enjoy our coffee and the state of Maine and hope and pray that Mark gets his act together.

Fred Carey

St. George