Alvin Richardson

I’m not my typical lighthearted self this morning and thus, my normally upbeat message to you is not forthcoming. Rather, it is one of disgust at the way many citizens of our country have handled their business when it comes to doing their part to slow down the current pandemic.

We’ve all seen it on TV and heard the reports about folks that just don’t get it. The simple truth of the matter is that had we, as a country, had enough people to wear their mask, practice social distancing and be diligent about hand-washing, we would be through with this thing by now or at the very least would have it under control.

Unfortunately, too many of our population don’t follow those only-modestly troublesome guidelines, and I’m trying to figure out why. Is it because wearing a mask isn’t cool? Could it be that some feel like there is no real danger? Maybe they have read one of those whacko internet websites that says the pandemic is a fake perpetrated by the Chinese, and for some idiotic reason, they believe it.

Whatever the reason may be, we are treated to a daily deluge of information that includes pictures of people partying in bars, on beaches, in swimming pools, and countless other places where the spread of the virus is virtually assured.

It ought to occur to a person of reasonable intelligence that even if they aren’t afraid of getting COVID-19 that they are making our country a more dangerous place for many who are trying to do their part and many others who are at serious risk if they become infected. Thus, logically one must assume that these reasonably intelligent spreaders of the virus do not give a rat’s behind (actually, I was thinking of another word but will forgo it) about their fellow citizens who fall into the high-risk category. That attitude, my friends, could be accurately described with several words. Callous, heartless, or maybe even cold-blooded come to mind. Take your pick.

Maybe we don’t have as many people of reasonable intelligence as I had previously assumed. We certainly don’t seem to have as many with the kind of discipline it takes to weather a difficult storm as I would have thought. Sadly, we also even seem to have a severe shortage of those with empathy for their fellow man. Lacking in all those fairly important characteristics does not bode well for our future.

Our economy has run off its rails. That it could quickly rally is a rational assumption, if only we had the discipline to do what it takes to flatten the curve and ultimately win the battle. The United States has always been the country that could pull together during a crisis and ultimately win the day. The history books are full of such instances. For some reason, we seem to have lost our edge in the department and are headed toward becoming a second-class nation.

We are a laughing stock around the world because of the way we have handled this particular crisis and the lack of discipline we have shown that has led us to where we are today. First world nations around the globe have worked their way through the crisis with solid science, common sense and self-restraint. Many are returning to normal at a steady pace but the U.S. is finding itself in a position of floundering around in isolation and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better.

At the beginning of all this, I was not one that would have mandated masks or social distancing. I assumed after hearing from our medical experts that these simple acts would play a key role in winning the COVID-19 war, people would just do it. Nor, did I think that law enforcement should have to deal with a rule that would essentially be unenforceable. Now, I don’t know. I thought we had the right stuff. Now I’m just not sure.

What I am sure of is that we are paying a dear price for our lack of common sense and discipline and as a result, this thing is not nearly over.

Please don’t unmask your ignorance. Wear the mask and do the right things.

Email comments to





React to this story:


Recommended for you