Editorial

EDITORIAL: Those Who Can, Horde — Those Who Cannot, Hunger

If you’ve tossed caution to the wind and gone to a grocery store in the last several days, you’ve noticed how people have grabbed water, cleaning supplies and food staples off the shelves as if we’re preparing for life in underground bomb shelters.

Despite requests from government officials, those who have been financially able have ignored the suggestion to purchase what we need — instead shopping like exuberant parents during the first week of discounted items made available during the rush of the Christmas season.

In this case, it’s not toys that folks are buying but food or cleaning supplies.

We’re told that the shelves will be replenished in short order. But tell that to those who have found themselves rationing their sole roll of toilet paper for a family of five. Tell that to children who awaken hungry hoping for a simple breakfast but forced to eat junk food — a quick sugar fix but far from nutritious.

We don’t want to glaze over how crucial a time that is for Americans or those from other countries around the world. This is a serious, potentially deadly time for all of us.

Yet, we fear that those who can, are and may continue to horde. But what about people who have fewer dollars to spend or no money at all? What about “the least of these?”

In the film “The Book of Eli,” which starred Denzel Washington, the antagonist, Eli, walked the Earth, dedicated to his mission of ensuring that the Word of God would not be lost in a world where the need for and availability of shelter, water and food had become so intense and limited that prices had soared. Of course, the result was that greed took hold of the planet’s inhabitants.

We have survived world wars, pandemics and absurd examples of “man’s inhumanity to man.” We will survive this situation, we believe, as well. But only if we remember that while we may be in self-isolation, we do not have live on an island alone. If we survive, we will survive together.

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