The New Normal

Realizations about the virus obviously hit us in waves. In the beginning there was the cancelling of school for the remainder of last school year. That was an adjustment but we eventually made it work. Most of us lost our summer vacations and many summer activities, but we somehow made it through those events.

Now, we have the closure of fall and winter activities. Nothing speaks to the failure of the current administration like the fact that many of us are seeing these plans evaporate. Yes, we are coming up on 220,000 deaths. Yes, there have been millions of jobs lost and thousands of businesses that have gone under. It’s really real for those folks. Let’s consider the rest of us.

Locally, high school and junior high extra curricular activities were delayed and some have been cancelled. To get personal for a second, my daughter has seen many of her choir events cancelled and her volleyball season considerably shortented. These are things she will never get back.

My family has a tradition where we have a golfing weekend with 20+ of our closest friends every October. That was pushed back to March for the first time in over 30 years. There are doubts that it will be held then as well. This weekend was the weekend the event was supposed to happen.

My uncle is supposed to host Christmas this year. He is a MAGA guy. He is hurt and in denial. All three of his brothers are trying to tell him that having 20+ people huddled in a house is not the best thing to do right now. He is taking it personally. I understand that on a number of levels.

In many ways this is the negative effect of having a president with mixed messages. Perhaps if we had all closed down for a dedicated month or two early in the spring then maybe this wouldn’t have happened. Maybe if we had a mandatory mask order nation wide with a president that consistently wore masks and had his people consistently wear masks then we would have truly flattened the curve.

Maybe if we listened to the scientists along the way we would be resuming normal activities right now. Maybe we would have had over 100,000 people still living and breathing. Maybe a lot of things. Instead we have a president desperately wanting to return to a normal that just isn’t possible. Every time we attempt to appear normal we have a super spreader event.

Sadly, a November 3rd victory doesn’t change anything in the interim. We have to wait until January 20th until Joe Biden is inaugurated. Things won’t immediately get better even then. All administrations take time to put their own practices in place. This is where the president has utterly failed on so many levels. He doesn’t understand that it takes work. You don’t just wish things to happen and then they magically happen.

For instance, let’s pretend that they actually have a vaccine before election day. How do we distribute the vaccine? How do we manufacture even 100 million doses. How are those doses delivered and administered? How do we pay for that? Are people going to be asked to pay top dollar for a vaccine that will keep everyone safe? What if they can’t afford the price? There doesn’t seem to be any indication that the administration has considered any of these questions. It’s as if he thinks it magically goes from someone else producing the vaccine to people getting the vaccine with no work coming in between.

Beyond the race baiting, trashing of our relationships with allies, withdrawing from world leadership, sexism, and xenophobia it is this failure that might be the worst in terms of lasting effects on the country. He just never really understood the job. We might not return to normal until next summer at the earliest.

If Trump somehow wins then who knows how long we will have to wait to go back to the way things were. He never seemed interested in doing the work necessary to make that happen. It would magically go away when the weather got warmer. Maybe now Big Pharma will come to the rescue. Maybe they will do all the planning, preparation, and roll out for him too. He can continue his hard work of making America great again. We just keep winning.

Author: sbarzilla

I have written three books about baseball including The Hall of Fame Index. I also write for You can follow me on twitter @sbarzilla.

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