Coronaviruses

Maybe it was bound to happen. With the state seeing more and more cases of the coronavirus, Gov. Doug Ducey issued a new executive order last week mandating new regulations to try to halt the spread of the virus.

Health experts trace the explosive growth in the number of cases to May 15, when Ducey’s stay-at-home order expired. Others have noted there has been a far larger number of people in the state tested for the virus, and, not surprisingly, more people have been found to carry it.

One thing that’s happening now is more people who show no symptoms are being tested. I suspect there are a lot of people out there who have the virus but don’t know it because they haven’t shown any symptoms. A lot of them will never show any symptoms or become sick.

There is some debate about how often people who show no symptoms can pass the virus on to others, but the medical experts agree it can and does happen.

At the same time, one has to ask if Arizona reopened too soon. Some have accused state leaders of putting corporate profits over human lives.

Let’s look at this thing from both sides. It’s true the stay-at-home order may have kept a lot of people from contracting the virus. On the other hand, people need to work and have an income. Businesses, especially small businesses, need to be open so they can employ people. The economy has been falling apart due to restrictions related to the coronavirus.

On the one hand, if you kept the state closed, you would keep more people healthy but the economy become a disaster. On the other hand, if you open the state, people can go back to work but you potentially expose more people to the virus.

This would’ve been a tough decision for any political leader.

We know enough about this virus by now to get a handle on how to keep it from spreading. Wash your hands, clean and sanitize all surfaces, practice social distancing, and wearing masks in public places are all things we can do. If we did this things, opening up the state would be safe. However, from what I hear, there are a lot of people who aren’t doing these things.

Kacey Ernst, an epidemiologist with the University of Arizona, told ABC News many people equated reopening the state with it being safe. Well, it’s not safe. That nasty little bug is still around, and it’s up to us to do the things we need to do to keep it from spreading.

Stay-at-home orders won’t do any good if people do not put into practice what we know will slow down this virus. The Colorado River Indian Tribes have a much tougher stay-at-home order in place than the state did, yet their number of cases has been skyrocketing. There may be many reasons for this, including more testing at Indian Health Services. However, I’ve been to Walmart, which is on Tribal land, and I see a lot of people who aren’t practicing social distancing. Many of them are appear to be from California.

What it really boils down to is this:  it’s up to each and every one of us to do what we can to stop the virus from spreading. We can beat this nasty little bug, but only if we all do our part and we stand together.

All things must come to an end, and the coronavirus will pass, too. However, it’s up to us to make sure what’s left after the virus has become a thing of the past is worthwhile.

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