Common sense is defined as sound and prudent judgement based on a simple perception of the situation or facts. What’s the situation today? Today our country is dealing with a lot of unknowns. The enemy is invisible and continuing to gather strength through human connections. The threat is real as numerous new cases of coronavirus continue to be reported daily. The message is clear – the best way to slow the curve in spreading COVID-19 is to socially distance yourself from other people. So why aren’t people in this country listening?

It’s human nature to feel a heightened sense of anxiety during unknown circumstances. Some just don’t want to believe it. Some say they don’t know anybody with the virus, so there’s no way they can catch it. Some are so wrapped up in politics that they are jaded by the thought that an actual pandemic could actually be occurring right before our eyes. The threat is real. Let’s fight it with common sense. 

The recommendations by the CDC and other public health professionals are primarily to help slow the spread of this virus. When you hear the phrase “flattening the curve,” this means attempting to prevent a sudden spike in COVID-19 cases that would severely strain our health care system. By slowing the spread, we can dampen the spike, thus not overly burdening our health care systems and facilities.

Whether you think the lockdowns are an overreaction or not, there is science and rationale behind these measures. Authorities understand the economic ramifications of shutting down entire cities. Officials know such actions can cause some degree of economic contraction. That’s why the science says: social distancing. 

So why aren’t some of us listening?

NOBODY likes our entertainment options are being taken away. No one likes restrictions on our movement. We work hard and live in a free country. It’s not so much that we take these things for granted, as much as it is that this is America. Our nation is quite literally built on an ideal of individual freedom. Quarantine and restriction just aren’t in our national lexicon. But, if we value our way of life so much, times like these call for swift, decisive, and science-based actions to ensure we can get back to the way of life we enjoy sooner, rather than later.

We do empathize with the the service industry people who won’t be collecting a paycheck. We feel for the small businesses that will have to consider closing their doors if people are confined to their homes. Many restaurants and some retail stores will be offering curbside pickup or delivery options. Take advantage of these services! Buy gift certificates for businesses you like now – even though you may not redeem them in the near future. Find ways to support small and local businesses, but use some common sense in doing it. Spend your money, but protect yourself and the larger population at the same time.

This country always finds a way to rebound. Communities across this country lift each other up in times of need. There is no doubt that, after this is over, there will be a slew of small businesses that will need help. There is also no doubt that communities, our communities, will provide that support. Until that time, please take measures to help protect those who may be more vulnerable than you. Don’t stop living your life, but USE COMMON SENSE.

Our scientists and health care professionals are working to find a way to beat this pandemic. It will go away. In the meantime, please use common sense.