Out of Respect For

I want to apologize in advance for some of my language here and my anger at human indecency in the United States this year.

I really, really was hoping that for the last 3-5 weeks I could avoid having to write this, to go here to what I am about to attempt to drive home to far too many naïve, inconsiderate, well-intentioned(?) Americans who despite their general goodness, STILL are not thinking outside of themselves, the bigger picture of just how many other Americans are suffering the loss of loved ones. What makes our nationwide gross naivety, embarrassing gross obliviousness to one of our nation’s highest death-counts in our entire 244-year history? Allow me to put this in the most polite way I know how:

Many of the current 233,000 PLUS American deaths, if not most of them, could have been saved.

During one of the world’s most deadliest pandemics, with necessary PPE’s, distancing and/or quarantining/lockdowns from high-risk exposures, and finally by following the top expert’s warnings and medical-viral protocols, it’s monumental consequences could have been reduced, probably reduced greatly!

In a number of those 233k cases the odds for surviving could have been easily increased! Yet, too many unaffected Americans—of a specific demographic and political affiliation—wanted to minimalize the pandemic in January–March 2020 and right now they still want to minimalize the near QUARTER-MILLION DEATHS (233,000+) as something other than a historically unprecedented F*CK UP by not just our federal, state, and county leaders across the continental 49, but by perhaps half or more of the American population—332-million citizens total today—who don’t seem to get it, they refuse to get it, or worse ignore those 233,000 families and extended family members! By the time I get this blog-post published, that death-toll will have already climbed significantly. Wrap your brain around that please.

But allow me to put this self-inflicted 2020 American catastrophe and popular insensitivity in proper perspective.

If you have a faint heart or a hint of humanity for mass deaths caused by wars, terrorism, natural disasters, or pandemics, then I advise you to skip the following slide-show of some of our nation’s most horrific losses of life since 1776. WARNING, some images may be graphic and disturbing:

At this current rate we will surpass in 2021 the total American deaths of World War II: 419,400. Once that number is passed only the American Civil War remains as this country’s last greatest loss of life. Do we really want to surpass the most appalling four years this country has ever endured, bar-none?

You might be asking “Professor, deaths from a pandemic, from an invisible killer-virus similar (in terms of risk and death) to other global diseases or cancer or heart disease are not the same thing as world wars, large military conflicts, terrorism, or natural disasters.” Perhaps. That’s a logical yet premature response. I’d immediately ask Is this not a war on a virus to stop and minimize as much as possible the number of casualties this pandemic steals?

When a war is waged between two or more nations, do they not rally all their mental, physical, and material resources of their people to win the war? Do they not rally with each other to defeat or better prepare for the next horrific, natural disaster? So why wouldn’t we do the exact same thing? Why wouldn’t we do everything possible to wage war on this lethal enemy as aggressive as possible?

This maniacally invisible hostile who cares nothing about who we humans are is wiping out over a quarter-of-a-million Americans, innocents who were not given the/our best chances of winning or of surviving? To add insult to injury with a smack, it is not the dead that must suffer years or decades after COVID-19 takes those loved ones, it is the living who must endure the torment that their loved ones probably did not have to die or suffer permanently for the remainder of their lives.

So yes, how is this war, this fight against COVID-19 any different than those above images for lives that did not have to die or contract permanent damage?

On the contrary and despite America’s epidemic indifference to the loss of so many innocent lives, following below after this paragraph are examples of what many of us rudely brush over about this Pandemic War. With already too many orphaned kids of their parent(s), or grandparents, or uncles, aunts or cousins, 233,000 dead Americans and counting represents only a portion of all the suffering. Sons and daughters who lost their elderly parents. Grandchildren who lost their favorite Grandpa or Grandma. Dearest close friends or coworkers—who have unnecessarily lost their favorite coworker, boss, or job—must also face the looming reality of bankruptcy or homelessness. Here’s an idea of what I mean by American indifference to unnecessary loss of lives and permanent damage or suffering…

Tuesday night, October 27th here in Arlington, TX, the site of MLB’s World Series between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Tampa Bay Rays, third baseman Justin Turner had to be removed from Game 6 in the bottom of the 7th inning after he had tested positive for COVID-19. Quarantining were the rules, the protocols of MLB and all the teams and players BEFORE they started the 60-game season in July 2020. Everybody with the league, including all 3,000+ players agreed to COVID-19 protections and rules. Duh, it was for the safety of everyone involved in the bizarre 2020 season. It was for the safety of everyone’s family members too. Despite this necessary protection for all lives, here is what took place when the LA Dodgers won the World Series:

And yet, this is what Justin Turner decided to do for himself, and his teammates let him do, encouraged him to do with no regard for their own safety, their teammates, everyone’s family members, and let’s be clear… no regard for the children there on the field for pictures and celebrations! This gross indifference essentially represents the entire bulk of Americans in that specific demographic I mentioned above.

But there’s more. Unbelievably, there is MORE blatant disregard for the highest possible safety of fellow Americans, teammates, coworkers, family members, and yes… small children too. A revisit of photos I’ve already posted in previous blog-posts going back to early Spring 2020:

The ripple-effect of this ignored Pandemic War stretches so VERY MUCH FURTHER than simply the 233,000+ American deaths! The emotional toll and permanent change for so many families will likely never be fully appreciated, fully known, or fully empathized if so many in America unaffected by this killer pandemic continue and continue to brush-over, minimalize, and constantly dream-up excuses or justifications to be unsafe and disregard, no… basically say “I don’t give a f*ck about YOUR safety or chances of surviving this deadly pandemic war. I will do whatever tha hell I want.” Though some Americans do not explicitly verbalize it out loud, their actions say it.

I must ask some really idiotic questions: When there exists a chance of you or a loved one surviving a highly risky undertaking, say like climbing Mt. Everest, or going into a wild, remote woodland with nightly temperatures of 20-30 below zero and grizzly bears, or joining your military for an ongoing conflict against formidable enemies trying to kill you, do you not want the best chances of survival? If there is any significant chance you could survive life’s dangers, say a 75%, 50%, or a “decent chance” of returning alive, intact, and unharmed, who WOULDN’T take the best odds possible? Is how you might die, leaving all your loved ones behind, important to you? Important to your wife, your own kids and how they might suffer in the aftermath?

And yet for most of 2020 there have been too many Americans who answer those questions with their middle finger, the F*CK YOU bird.

This insane thinking and self-absorbed snubbing for the safety of fellow Americans, let alone our own family members, has got to stop! Why? First, I can’t believe anyone would seriously ask that question! But for those dimwits who don’t get it and most of all simply Out of Respect For all the American fatalities from COVID-19 that didn’t really have to die early, and their suffering family members—whose loved ones seem to not matter to all to these thousands or millions of moronic Americans not yet personally affected—I can only say in utter bafflement and rising resentment:

Are you a human being? Do you not have any empathy or respect to how this Pandemic War has permanently affected millions and millions of American lives!? Are you F*CKING KIDDING ME!?

Where did America’s common decency disappear to!?


Live Well — Love Much — Laugh Often — Learn Always

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37 thoughts on “Out of Respect For

  1. Wow man. That has some punch to it. Delivered well sir. Could not agree more or attempt to say it better.

    Really highlights the “I really didn’t want to know that of my countrymen” feeling I have had since 2016.

    There are days I don’t want to be associated with humans.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I can completely relate Shell, sadly. 😔 Sometimes what matters most in our very short lives isn’t necessarily ourselves, and it damn sure isn’t money/wealth! But it is simply what we’ve done for others, particularly family and friends, then their friends and family, and it goes on and on and on until the entire planet is covered. I believe they call that the Domino-effect. They all remain standing, or in time… one or two knock-down the entire lot of them, dead so to speak. 😉

      How do so many today not see this simple analogy and truth, ESPECIALLY when this Pandemic War is in fact the FORCE, the virus that “knocks-down” all, most, or too many dominoes!? It is not rocket science to see how each one of us affects in small ways AND large ways another’s well-being or torment!!! 🤦‍♂️

      Thank you Shell for the compliment, as much as I do not really seek it on this travesty.💔

      Like

  2. The pandemic is a disease. But it’s being treated as a political issue because it’s believed to be as if a political issue… in the same way women’s healthcare including abortion is believed to be a moral issue and therefore is treated as if a moral issue. We fool ourselves all the time this way, such as assuming climate change caused by human activity is a belief some people have, some people don’t, and that’s okay versus rather than understanding the fact that it is.

    When we forget what the issues actually are and categorize them as something they are not, we can be fooled into thinking it something it’s not. This is how reality is lost because we fail to respect it and substitute whatever beliefs we prefer. It’s a human thing to do and it has potentially devastating consequences. Each of us should have enough education to constantly review our own presumptions and recognize when our beliefs are trumping facts. It’s not easy but it could just save hundreds of thousands of lives if only more of us would do our own little part.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Tildeb, I could not have said it any better. In fact—and please notice Sir my “beliefs” are trumped by “facts” 😉 and these facts presented here as well as those facts science, medicine, virology, and epidemiology scream to us—I could never put it as concisely and eloquently as you often do. 🙂

      Is taking a few brief moments in considered foresight, forethought as to our own actions then ripple-effects—say the carbon footprint we may cause by dumping a household appliance in a field, or automobile radiator fluids down a drain, or burying piles of trash of non-degradable plastics/pollutants—really that difficult to do? Simply ask ourselves This action I’m about to take might be beneficial for ME, but will it be for everyone else around me? For my property and theirs? For my descendants and theirs? Is there a better way?

      Tildeb, how long does that take, seriously? (rhetorical) Why is a simple facemask, rubber gloves(?), 6-8 feet minimum distance, and regular washing of hands so hard to grasp for so many?

      Like

      • It’s not hard to grasp. But the reticence to do so is the same as, say, getting a creationist to even LOOK at the overwhelming evidence for evolution. It’s a hallmark of faith-based belief in action, a framing of reality that is ideologically driven rather than evidence-based. And we see the same cherry picking to support the bias. Also, the frustration we have, when meeting faith and attempting to alter it based on facts and reason and patience and tolerance and good will and effort, is the same. These tools of the rational are the wrong tools. Satire and humor remain the best responses. And the same maxim applies that understanding insanity means that us doing the same thing – arguing with facts and evidence – produces the same results: a doubling down. So we have to change our tools and, again, I think this is where atheism is a good schooling.

        It would be of tremendous help if leadership endorsed this idea that each of should do our part when possible because policies for the underlying problem will do the rest. Carbon footprint, for example, was created by the oil and gas industry and sold to people in place of policy changes for the real problem: burning fossil fuels and dumping the by-product into the atmosphere. If everyone could be busy little bees reducing their own carbon footprint, then they would feel like they were doing something when, in fact, individuals supporting and rewarding policy changes would have made all the difference 20 and 30 years ago.

        So each of us has an important job to do: not be fooled… like believing we have the means and power by personal choices to effectively reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We don’t. It requires our personal support by voting to empower our legislators to impose fundamental policy changes to alter our energy system. And as Feynman pointed out, we are the easiest people to fool. This is why Sarah Cooper has hit such a sweet spot these days interpreting Trump’s words so that we can interpret them emotionally without his presence there to interrupt our perception that reveals the idiocy of his words at work. This is the right tool. Combine that with shame and embarrassment and humour, and the populace has a great deal of influence reducing a populist like Trump into the nothing-of-public-value he embodies – the honest quid pro quo. Such public humiliation of him and his enablers – and that’s what we should call voters who support him: enablers – presented by individual after individual at every turn, in every store, at every event, in every meeting, before every camera, in each interview, would I think would make his influence evaporate. Just like refusing to have a meaningful dialogue with a creationist is the only rational policy to follow for those who have already rejected rationality, so too is rejecting rationality to address populist enablers.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Satire and humor remain the best responses.

          Those are the tools we must switch to using? 😟 Tildeb, I will have a very hard time doing that right after writing this blog-post about “Out of Respect For” the already 233,000+ dead and those families suffering from those deaths. My sensibilities of humor in light of so much torment for living family members makes it seemingly impossible for me.

          Now “personally supporting by voting to empower our legislators to impose fundamental policy changes, shame” via exposure and that “embarrassment” I can get behind, but humor(?)… making light of all the death and suffering while it is still ongoing, that will be hard for me, very hard.

          I like your analogy of “no meaningful dialogue with a Creationist.” I’m sure that is an excellent tool combined with repeated public humiliation. 🙂

          Like

    • Welcome to populism. It’s the same childish game as follow the leader but with much more dire consequences if the leader substitutes his or her narrative for reality and tries to replace it. This is when we get the same doubling down as we see with religious folk and just as difficult to break the faith one has already invested.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Yep. And what is so much more shameful Nan is that most of those Trumpanzees don’t even realize it. Talk about the blind leading the blind! This year and likely most all of 2021 takes the cake, party, and all the gag-gifts too! 🤦‍♂️

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It might help if we switch the focus to the economic impact. When everyone wears a mask and maintains social distance, more stores can open, more people can got back to work, and more money is added to the economy.

    When too many people refuse to wear a mask and socially distance, more stores have to close, fewer people are employed, and more businesses go bankrupt.

    Liked by 4 people

    • If I’m honest Anne, I feel reluctant to say you have a good idea there (though it may be) because I literally feel sick in my stomach when I try to detract from or divert from all the family loved ones’ loss—today approaching 235,000 deaths, all ages, and counting—and knowing that they probably did not have to die so early. Making it about money, about revenues and business just doesn’t sit well with me. :/

      Ugh, is that what we have become: life has a monetary symbol attached to it no matter the age of the deceased? A human’s value is measured by their contribution to the GDP?

      I know you mean well Anne. I’m just expressing my own honest discomfort with any reasoning or explanation that values life merely as a dollar sign. I refuse to look at people that way. That’s just me.

      Like

      • Your rage and frustration are clearly justified. At the same time, the people who are not getting the message haven’t been getting it for months now. So, it seems that it is not getting through.

        I used to teach Communications and the bottom line to any persuasive argument is to target the audience you have, not the audience you wish you had.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Your point is well made. 🙂 I have often been accused by Mom, by friends, by ex-wives for sure, by former bosses that “I am a man of unshakeable principles, stubbornly so sometimes.” Was never sure if that was a compliment or not. 😉

          I do understand business “Communications.” It is forever wed to and in bed with Sales & Marketing. I’ve also worked many a sales position and most of them—after learning the sales pitch for the targeted customers—I quit after 1 or 2 months because I knew deep in my heart (of extremely stubborn principles) that WHAT I was selling/saying was not totally true, a little misleading, and totally meant to get them emotionally high to open up their wallet or purse and get impulsive. After 3-4 sales jobs Anne, I realized permanently that I could NEVER be a salesman, ever. 😄

          In many ways Mom is right about me, “Son, you have too much of your US Marine Corps Dad in you.” To a few degrees I have to agree with her. It does not serve me well sometimes. :/

          Like

            • Hah! Now ain’t THAT a shock what I was trained for… here in the #1 capital of Capitalism. 😉 😛 Honestly, I’m so very grateful for the principles I was taught. Unfortunately, they rarely apply in this nation’s economy and politics, at least here in Texas—an “At Will” labor laws state. 😬 Those are laws which PROMOTE 1800’s Wild Wild West dog-eat-dog unregulated business practices, hiring practices, and OH YEAH… most certainly sexual harassment in the workplace. 🤦‍♂️

              Liked by 1 person

            • Your rage and frustration are completely understandable. The question is, where do you go from here? More rage may not be your most productive avenue. I’m more of a Marshall McLuhan kind of communicator. I try to create a sort of detachment in order to process rationally.

              Like

      • If it were about money, then the examples of a much faster return and recovery are all over the world… always accompanied by reasonable measures and a willing population. It’s the unwilling portion of the population as far as the US is concerned that is the problem here so, like Snowbird accurately points out, much of it has to do with effective communication and that’s where you quite rightly target your rage and frustration when that message is opposite of these measures and promotes unwillingness. It’s actually reprehensible if not immoral to care so little about one’s neighbours and so much about filling one’s immediate desires.

        Liked by 2 people

  4. As soon as five people tested positive for the virus, Trump announced that Corona would dwindle to zero in a week. As record-breaking body counts got reported, his self-congratulatory team has always proclaimed minimal deaths, just as the body counts rose. When deaths exceeded 100,000 he informed us that it would have been a million were his POTUSship not there to take every step imaginable to defeat the invisible enemy, he proclaimed himself a War President.

    He revels in his ability to get away with murder while denigrating his base, his self-measured importance is writ large in exaggerated rally counts, the measure of his Presidential worth, just as he photoshopped the overwhelmingly huge Inauguration throngs that he tweeted on for months.

    When a Covid victim dies of heart failure or any other cause, the statisticians are accused of falsely blaming the virus. Meanwhile, not considering how Covid compromises organs to a point of no return.
    His damage over the last year alone is incalculable.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Common decency hasn’t gone anywhere. The large majority of people in the country do observe social distancing and wear masks when they go out. The ones who refuse to do so are a minority, but still enough to make the pandemic vastly worse than elsewhere.

    The existence of a lot of stupid assholes doesn’t negate the fact that most of us are not stupid assholes.

    Liked by 3 people

    • 😄 Hahaha… and how long have we been told that now? Or versions of it? Sounds a lot like a cheating husband/wife telling their secret mistress/lover “I promise I will leave them soon, real soon! Just be a little more patient please!” Suddenly it is 3-5 years later, huh? 🤦‍♂️

      Like

  6. Your photographs, statistics, and words are spot on and compelling to most of us. However, there is a significant portion of the population that simply like to construct their own version of reality. Some would argue that such thinking begins when as children we’re taught to believe in mythical deities and the notion that if you only accept a man that was crucified 2000 years ago as the savior of mankind, all of your sins will be forgiven and you’ll spend eternity in paradise. It’s a convenient and pleasing scenario. Why stop there? Many of the people that refuse to follow the public health guidelines, won’t believe your statistics or eloquent paragraphs. They’ve constructed, with the help of voices they’ve chosen to trust, a different version of reality. Their brains don’t rely on evidence. Instead, they base their world view on anecdote and bravado. It’s frustrating as all get out. But IMHO, that’s the way it is. Thanks, however, for making an effort.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you Carol. I’m afraid for the most part you are correct, particularly regarding the American population of fairy-tale and myth-believers. 😞

      What I will not tolerate though is this continued marginalizing and brushing over of our now 237,000 PLUS Americans dead and still rising… many/most needlessly! How does ANY American leader(s) sleep at night when many of us Americans know full well this pandemic could’ve been—AND SHOULD HAVE BEEN—handled like a war against the U.S., therefore saving many, many more lives by organized, efficient, nationwide preparations and command from the top, ESPECIALLY when we had at least 3.5 months warning!!!? How does any human (religious or not) with just an average amount of compassion and decency simply shrug their shoulders and say “Oh well, life goes on“? And during a PANDEMIC WAR that one of the wealthiest, most industrialized nations on the planet could combat 100x better!? But is not because our supreme Commander-in-Chief refuses to live in real world reality!!! How!? 😠🤬

      Carol, I hope today Nov. 3rd, election day, all American voters clearly show how utterly incompetent our White House occupant is and has been and removes the moron democratically. I hope late tonight or tomorrow morning I will be ecstatic and dancing jigs that the USA is still a somewhat intelligent nation of people and not so gullible, naïve to bad TV Reality Show hosts who are not even good business men! I hope that’s our reality tomorrow. 😬

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Hey Prof, I just read:

    “On Tuesday (this day), in Texas, the city of El Paso reported 1,493 cases of COVID-19 and a positivity rate of 20 per cent. That’s just a bit more than the record 1,388 cases reported in Ontario (that’s this day). Yet Ontario has a population of 15 million compared to 680,000 for El Paso.”

    Wow. And, in stark contrast, there’s a huge hue and cry here from many in the medical community asking governments to shut things down here now for a minimum of 2 weeks, probably 4 to get another handle on this. Although many businesses are hurting and don’t want to do this, the population is preparing.

    I also read:

    “With hospitals at more than 100 per cent occupancy, the strain on the entire health-care system isn’t hard to find. A week ago, El Paso’s local government had four mobile morgues, that is: refrigerated trailers to store the dead outside hospitals, medical examiners’ offices or funeral homes. Then the county received another 93 bodies. On Sunday, it ordered another six trailers. “It doesn’t look good,” Judge Ricardo Samaniego, the county’s top political leader, said. “It may be as much as 20 per day the next two to three weeks. There might be more and more of an incline of deaths.”

    After the county issued a local lockdown order on Oct. 29, which mandated that residents stay home except for essential or emergency activities, a nighttime curfew and the closure of non-essential businesses, business owners and the state’s attorney general turned to the courts to overturn the restrictions.”

    Again, just wow. That means in all likelihood that all other medical access is put on hold, necessary surgeries cancelled, cancer treatment suspended, medical staff from other areas pulled in to help which closes those other areas, and hard decisions made by doctors to decide by a point system who gets ventilators and who doesn’t. That’s probably a direct result of the surge that produces a much higher death rate. And these morons are going to court to overturn the restrictions? That’s a death sentence for many if they succeed. I really wish the SAME people who refuse to mask, who protest restrictions, who fund the legal challenge, had to work at least 2 full shifts in the ICU with Covid patients to see the real world effect of realizing their selfish intentions.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Tildeb,

      Every word you’ve written there is absolutely true and undeniable. Our Attorney General Ken Paxton is the typical hardcore Republican—most likely ambitiously seeking the Governor’s Office or Lt. Governor’s Office after hardcore Republican Gregg Abbott leaves after his final term, which is indefinite, unfortunately.

      And these morons are going to court to overturn the restrictions?

      I am very ashamed to say Tildeb that here in Texas, Party-loyalty trumps ANYTHING life-threatening, benefitting the Greater Good (of Socialism), or undermining their business revenues and profits. That aspect of the economy 💰💲💰💲💰💲 has always been the highest priority of the radical Republican members and their ethnic demographic of the state. It is truly a sad testimony, is it not? 😔

      Like

      • Saying, “Wow!” again just doesn’t cut the depth of disgust I hold for those who simply disregard reality for the harm their actions cause and put other’s lives at risk. In almost any other context, such intention to cause harm and multiply suffering would be prosecuted as criminal negligence. I don’t know how some people sleep at night. I really don’t.

        Liked by 2 people

        • They sleep well because They. Don’t. Care. The only thing that Repukes care about is $$$$. In their pockets.

          This pandemic has, with certainty, brought out the depth of selfishness that exists in the soul of many.

          Liked by 1 person

          • They don’t care, I know. This attitude is even more shameful, and we should all be reminded how shameful such an attitude is, on this day of all days where service to country is remembered as a high virtue, and the ONLY virtue that allows the freedom necessary for such selfish people to not care about others and still sleep well. To those people, I say, “You’re welcome, you ungrateful git.”

            Liked by 2 people

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