As the number of infections, hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 finally begin to show a slight but consistent daily decline, many U.S. officials have begun to tout their plans to lift current restrictions for cities, counties and states.
And while we are all anxious to remove our masks, board jet planes and cruise ships and send our children back to school, it remains imperative that we not move too quickly. Everyone has been affected by COVID-19 as it has emerged as an equal opportunity virus.
Millions of Americans have already received their first vaccination — some have even received both doses of the vaccine. However, we have not reached herd immunity. Further, let us not forget that millions have already died from the coronavirus with more deaths reported each day.
One unarguable fact about a virus should not be ignored: viruses do not stop at the geographical borders of the cities, counties, nations or along the waterways in which and where we live.
So, while America, under the aggressive, science-based leadership of the Biden-Harris administration, has initiated policies and procedures at a national level that have slowly helped our nation turn the corner, we are not out of the woods yet. Not by a long shot.
The crisis faced by many African nations and those who live in India confirms with deadly emphasis that COVID-19 has not disappeared.
It would be wonderful if we could snap our fingers or clap our hands and the world could suddenly return to life the way it was before COVID-19 disrupted our lives. But such a possibility only exists for those who live in a fantasy world.
Officials in the state of Maryland have said they believe that most restrictions will be lifted as early as Memorial Day. In New York, state officials vow that they will return to business as usual by July 4.
We would like to see their predictions come true. But let’s remember that this is not a game of musical chairs where speed matters for the one who seeks victory.
Slow and steady remains the only way to safely win this battle. Are we racing to live or are we racing toward death? You be the judge.