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Mon, Oct. 26

Wiederaenders: I choose life; stay smart during pandemic

Two signs of the current times – empty shelves at the grocery store, and wearing a protective mask while out and about. (Tim Wiederaenders, self-portrait/Courier)

Two signs of the current times – empty shelves at the grocery store, and wearing a protective mask while out and about. (Tim Wiederaenders, self-portrait/Courier)

I have mixed feelings with this whole coronavirus pandemic.

I talk with a lot of people who are, frankly, scared. They are seeing the closures, layoffs, empty shelves, and the upticks in the number of cases and deaths — locally, statewide and across the nation.

All of it bothers me too.

However, what choice do we have? To lay on the couch in a fetal position or go to war.

I am going to war!

To take a page from my late father-in-law’s book of life, I choose to approach this with a forward plan of action and positive mental attitude.

We have no other choices.

I talk with people and see many emails playing the blame game. One today (April 4), from a politician stated: “They have blood on their hands,” referring to officials’ lack of action. I have heard about executive orders, or the lack thereof, dating back to December and January. We have also seen our own governor, Doug Ducey, walk back part of his “essential services” order (April 3) to close more businesses (salons and barbers, etc.).

I am sad about it all, and especially for those people who are directly affected. But, if we live in the past we will always find blame, missteps and culprits.

What are you going to do about it now?

“Stay home. Stay healthy. Stay Connected.” — as Ducey said this past week.

Along those lines, I have received emails from many people complaining that local traffic is just as congested as it was before Ducey’s “stay at home” order. Likely some people are not paying attention; what I hope is that they are going to the store for essential needs.

You can do that; just don’t abuse it.

We also have the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggesting all Americans wear face masks now; if you do not have one/them, make one. If you can’t make one, wear a scarf or bandana — it is better than nothing.

And, remember, wearing one is not about protecting yourself; as goofy as you look, it is about caring for your fellow (wo)man — you are protecting those around you from what you may be carrying. That goes too for the driving around. Go out into society only for essential needs; otherwise, don’t.

I also have heard predictions of when this will go away, when it will stop — when things will return to “normal.” It makes sense that we will see the numbers of cases continue to go up; we’re testing more. It also means a peak — before we get to go downhill in the counts — is somewhere ahead of us.

From research I have done, looking at other countries, I say we’re looking at a May peak with a summer slide. The question is will it come back, like influenza does each year? Could be; I don’t know — nobody knows for sure. I guess that will depend on all of us and whether there is a vaccine someday.

But, again, if we prepare, stay smart in protecting ourselves and others, practicing “social distancing” and wearing protection, we will adapt — we will overcome. Oorah!

I am no expert. I also am nervous. But I choose life, and that means doing what has to be done.

Think about it, please.

Tim Wiederaenders is the senior news editor for the Prescott News Network. Follow him on Twitter @TWieds_editor. Reach him at 928-445-3333, ext. 2032, or

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