SQ Diary… page 14

Self-Quarantine Day 19 – 03/31/2020

Yesterday was Crash & Burn day. Encountered asshole-ishness all over social media nonstop, and by bedtime I gave in to the bruises and cried myself to sleep for the first time in about seventeen years.

My Pollyanna heart can never retain the fact that at least a third of my fellow citizens don’t want what I want. They prove in a crunch that what they want is chaos and license, and they’re making it harder for the rest of us to survive. And while we do what we can to protect ourselves and the people we love most, other Americans are calling us liars and accusing us of ganging up on their president.

Things like this don’t happen here, dammit, this is America. So somebody must be hoaxin’ us, right? Can’t be real.

SOMEthing real is happening. Medical personnel are dropping like flies – at least 51 doctors in Italy alone, I don’t know the current U.S. count – while they try to save the rest of us, without the tools they need. Wearing week-old masks (regs say to change after each infected patient) and draped in trash bags, slogging through hospital hallways clogged with patients on gurneys, hoping to save more people than they lose, and dreaming of just a couple of minutes to sit down somewhere. Or to pee – who knows when that last happened? Food? That was so two days ago.

The mean-spiritedness from the doubters is incomprehensible. Somehow it’s the fault of the medical profession that we’re all leaderless and stumbling in the dark? It’s OUR fault as ordinary everyday citizens that we allowed ourselves to be lied to without end?

The worst part of the pandemic so far – until the body count shocks everybody out of their shoes – is getting to know who we share a planet with. The philosophical/political/cultural divides are revealing more than we may have wanted to know. We don’t all share the same values, that’s being made painfully clear, and we’ve forgotten how to lay the differences aside for the good of all.

We can’t seem to communicate with each other – the two conversations never come together. It’s all about anger and suspicion and ideologies that simply can’t mesh – there are things unleashed in the nation that are tearing us apart at the seams, things that can’t be reconciled with the concept of a republic, a democracy, a united group of states. Unity has been shattered and replaced with a veneer of arrogance, an “I’m right, you’re wrong” approach to all of life.

It all feels unbearably sad. An ignominious end to a fairly good idea. We’ll still be a nation when this is over, in some bright tomorrow… but we’ll never be the same. That’s either the best possible news or the worst. Hope we all get to stick around for the ending…

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