Schools and churches are closed until further notice. Teachers have on-line classes prepared, and students are staying home with the adults. Outdoor activities are acceptable, but 6 foot spacing is advised. Bikers, runners, walkers and strollers are keeping a 6-foot space on paths, in the streets, and in parks on nice days. Spring seems to be trying to make its way here earlier this year with temperatures in the 50s during the day, 30s at night. Rain keeps us indoors on days like today. Climate change has caused some interesting weather patterns with temperatures nearing 100 degrees in Oklahoma today, and it’s still March. Storms are more extreme, and flooding is at its usual spring pace. Meanwhile, the people are staying home. Predictions have a baby boom in 9 months, an increase in divorces, and violence in volatile families.

Because of technology, we have a glut of information; some of it is conflicting as the government spokespeople don’t want us to panic, and they are concerned about the economy that has been shut down, so we are being reassured. Some responsible news outlets are telling us things are not improved, but are getting worse. Those of us who have people working in health care are aware of the desperate nature of this pandemic. Honesty could make people more careful about staying home and distancing. Many young people spent spring break on the Florida beaches, exacerbating the spread of the virus. Mardi Gras festivities in New Orleans caused a serious uptick of cases there. All of this is happening while essential equipment isn’t getting to hospitals. This will be a long, deadly summer. In Italy, doctors are being forced because of the situation, to give preferential treatment to those whose chance of survival is deemed more possible.

Another side issue was precipitated by the president’s calling this scourge the “Chinese coronavirus.”  Asian citizens are being harassed, attacked, threatened by some who think this country is only for white people. Blaming immigration for this problem is dangerous and irresponsible. We have become in some quarters a very angry people, acquiring a sense of power and privilege through hatred. I fear for the future.