Life is full of risks. And reasonable folks aim to strike a balance by taking prudent measures to reduce the risks without sacrificing life’s rewards.
It’s been a while. Our lives, like everyone else’s have been pretty up ended and we have had some challenge finding the space and focus to connect in this way that we did pre lockdown time, but we realized how important it is to move forward and move this dialogue forward as well and move our thinking and progress along. So we’ve got to get on with it. And we’ve talked at length off camera about all of this and we’ve each got our own opinion about it as does everyone out there. But the time has come I think to move out of this grand experiment, if we want to call it that. As I was mentioning, ABC7 News a couple of days ago you know, said “Suicides on the rise, amid mid stay at home order, Bay area medical professionals say.” So the doctors at John Muir medical center in Walnut Creek, they’ve seen more deaths by suicide during this quarantine period than deaths from the virus itself. And they’re calling to end the shelter in place order because it’s doing more damage on, really, infinite levels of our lives than any virus really, in my estimation, ever could. But he said the numbers are unprecedented. We’ve never seen numbers like this in such a short period of time. We’ve seen a year’s worth of suicide attempts in the last four weeks. Which is so heartbreaking, when you just sit with the implications of that and just try to connect to folks, especially, you know, we were talking––the younger folks in the world who don’t have the anchor of their family, their kids, a life that has been somewhat established, an identity, a trajectory that has been somewhat established in life as we, as older folks have.
It breaks my heart to even try to put myself in their shoes. Kids in college who are facing the prospect of not going back to campus and having some virtual reality world where they can’t meet people, you know, folks who aren’t dating, who can’t go date and can’t go just connect to their friends, which is such a part of their own discovery and emerging identity right now.
To connect to their teachers, for their teachers to connect to them. My son who ended up having to do the remaining of his college year online, he said, “even if we had a pretty decent class,”––which was challenging in itself just to have dialogue and discourse over zoom––he said, but then even if that, there wasn’t ever the feeling of completion that you have when you finish a class and you walk out and you’re chatting with the classmate or you’re chatting with the teacher to kind of wrap up those threads that have been inspired. Here it’s just, poof! Now you’re back in your room and you, you know, how does that get harnessed? You know, those threads of creation, not to get too abstract in it, but they’re lost. They just go and they’re done. And people are left sitting still in their place by themselves going, “Where am I? What is my purpose?”
And “What just happened? What is this experience?” And I won’t get too much into it either, but some of the dialogue circulating around on social media right now regarding the CDC’s recommendations for reopening schools––it sounds like beyond a dystopian nightmare, right? Social distancing? Staying apart? Being put in this isolation chair, essentially? As a child? I mean, don’t even get me started. And so, you know, we won’t make this a real long one, and I’m sure it’s going to provoke outrage in many folks who will say, But…”
“People are dying.”
People are dying. People ARE dying. People have always been dying. You know, 600,000 plus annual deaths from heart disease in the U.S. Alone, 500,000 plus deaths from cancer each year in the U.S. Alone, 250,000 plus deaths attributed to medical errors alone in the U.S. People die.
And those are the ones that are caught. Those are the ones that are noticed and documented.
Right. And you know, death is a part of life, Folks, first off.
And saying that doesn’t minimize the suffering and the hardship and the pain that everyone goes through when there is loss and tragedy that comes to your family. It is terrible. It’s suffering. It hurts. It’s painful.
It’s inconceivable. It’s inconceivable pain of course, when, when people die, when we lose people. And yeah, it sounds like I’m saying it flippantly, but I’m simply stating the fact of life that death is a part of it. This absurd notion now, you know, after we first start out with “flattening the curveand making sure that we’ve got the resources to care for people”––down to “We must prevent…”
“…All Death.” We’ve gone off the deep end here, Folks, and lost sight of any measured and reasonable approach to life’s risk benefit analysis. Right?
And just to chime in and flesh that out just a little bit. So with that flattening the curve, I mean the understanding that was given with, with these orders was to flatten the curve. Meaning everyone still needs to come in contact with this, but we don’t want to overwhelm our systems of care. So right there we are now creating some, there’s some other dialogue happening. There’s some other directive coming. It’s not about flattening the curve. It’s just “stay in your house forever? Don’t come in contact with it because we don’t want to contract it when what we do need to do is contract it and probably way more people have come in contact with it. There was an article that said that it’s beennow there’s cases from September in the US, right?
Right now we think it may have started in September. Yes. I am sure that much of the population has already gone through it. But just like anything, the healthy members of a population of course should let it circulate, develop some resistance, immunity, and then let it move on out. Let’s protect the vulnerable members of our society. Reasonably though, right? It doesn’t mean that we should destroy our businesses, lives families and become destitute so that none of us can take care of anything in order to prevent that. Anyway.
So we obviously know how I feel about this as I have felt about it the whole time. But as it’s gone on and become far more extreme and destructive, it is time to end this madness. And as someone brilliant just said to me not long ago, we’ve talked about this, we cannot stop living in order to prevent dying. We must be measured and balanced in everything that we do here and this virtual reality world isn’t cutting it. And I do not consent to this bizarre, abstract, disconnected world that some folks seem to be wanting to create. I absolutely support anyone who wants to walk around with a mask on for the rest of their lives even or with some six foot bubble in each direction. I support anyone who wants to stay home as long as they want.
I do not want to do that. That is not the world that I am bringing my children into. And that is not a future world really, I think that most people want to be living in.
And it’s not sustainable because we are social beings, right? And we need to be making connection and our children need to be making connection to find their way in the world. And the world. What world is that we’re making? I mean that’s really the thing that has been hitting me intensely is that this world that we’re making right now for our young people, these moments are huge. And to normalize the separation of humanity is wrong. It’s a wrong thing for them to be experiencing and living in. Yeah. And I, we need contact, real contact––and these gestures of pushing in to create more distance in a world that’s already so distant and isolated––which is why we have people making suicide attempts at such a rate because there’s no, the connection is what keeps us human. Connection and purpose, right? Having meaning in our life and, and caring for others, being cared for by others is one of the main things that gives us meaning in this world.
Yes. So end the lockdown and do not reverse course. Let’s open all this up. Let’s start living our lives again. Fully. Let’s start hugging. Let’s start hanging out. And many people are. I’m seeing it everywhere. People are starting to disregard this because it makes no sense. So we cannot stop living in order to prevent dying, otherwise, there’s no point in being alive in the first place. Let’s all remember that.