Cottrel: Stop complaining about steps taken to slow spread of the coronavirus

A sign on the door of a local nail salon explains why their closed Thursday. BILL LACKEY/STAFF

Professional sports have been shut down for awhile, but Monday morning quarterbacking is more prevalent than ever and it is just as annoying.

A month ago we were accepting that social distancing, staying at home, closing of non-essential businesses, hand washing, making homemade masks, etc were going to lower the number of potential casualties.

Today we can see how these measures are having a good effect on our life and the stimulus checks, although slow to arrive, will make a big difference.

Now that some of the edge is off our fears, everyone is an “expert” saying we didn’t act soon enough, our officials overreacted, too many businesses were closed, or government entities waited too long, had the wrong tests, didn’t share information, didn’t throw enough money at the problem, should have, could have, would have, etc.

All this second guessing and Monday morning quarterbacking makes me sick. Perhaps hindsight isn’t 20-20 after all.

Right now all I care about is that the curve is flattening, fewer people are dying than predicted, and it appears we are beginning to get this under control. Beginning.

Even in the cities, self isolation, hand washing, and mask wearing is beginning to reduce the number of hospitalizations. Dare we hope that the big tent hospitals and hospital ships may not be needed?

The fight is not over, but there is some positive progress.

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Could we have “realistically” done anything different? In spite of what the “experts” are saying, I don’t think so.

The key word here is “realistically.”

Remember how many complaints there were when the first closings began? Remember how this unpredictable virus spread in ways we had never seen before? Remember the panic when schools closed and the anger when St Patrick’s Day parties were shut down? Who will ever forget the irrational toilet paper hoarding and long lines at the stores?

Each increase of closings and restrictions were put in place because people were finding loop holes to get out and socialize much more than they should have. The more we learned about the virus the more important self-isolation became.

Back before the Super Bowl if anyone would have tried to impose our current draconian closings, people would have laughed. Only now do we ordinary folks understand what a monster this virus truly is. The pandemic is “real” and we understand that extreme measures were needed.

The limitations we needed to control Covid-19 were put into place around the time that we could finally get our heads around the concept of social distancing and self isolation. No one wanted to do this, but we could find no other way to fight the virus.

So now some folks are asking the next expected question.

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This time it’s the grown-ups asking “Are we there yet?” and “How soon will the restrictions be lifted?”

I know. I know we’ve been good for weeks, but…

My heart breaks for the businesses that have had to close and are anxious to reopen. I really don’t think any of our government officials from wanted to deprive people of their livelihoods, but it was essential to keep us apart.

The first of the stimulus relief checks will be deposited this week and hopefully small business help is in the works. When the time is right, things will gradually, slowly return to normal

Patience. We need more patience. It is wearing thin at times, but we have to persevere.

We still need to hang tough and stop taking our frustrations out on each other.

Mind your own business instead of complaining when you see a group of people talking in a lawn or a parking lot. (It is not your circus.)

Instead of griping, set a good example. Do what you can to help your neighbors in these difficult times. Donate to local food pantries or charities. Mow for a neighbor with a broken mower. Order takeout from local restaurants. Write letters, if you still know how. Plant extra vegetables to share. Attend worship services online. Share books and magazines. Make encouraging phone calls, and share positive Facebook posts, and email. Wave and smile.

We are still in this together although we may be getting on each other’s nerves a bit.

A wise course through these rough waters has been set. We need to stay the course. Stick with the plan. Keep on keeping on.