Misinformation, hypocrisy make COVID weigh more heavily

I may not be sick, but I’m tired. I’m tired of COVID. I’m tired of misinformation from all levels. I’m tired of feeling like not enough of us are taking this seriously. I’m tired that the weight for so much of this is on the shoulders of us to personally figure out what to do since we aren’t getting enough fact-based data and decisions.

From day to day, I am unclear what colour zone we’re in. I’m unclear what being in that zone means. I’m unclear about lockdowns versus shutdowns. I’m unclear about what essential means. Most of all, I’m unclear about how through all of this the schools are still open yet youth are being blamed for not taking this seriously.

Now let’s talk variants. We’re not supposed to travel, but the variants of concern sure are, from Brazil, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. Let’s ratchet up the confusion factor another notch by asking which vaccinations cover which variants and which ones are safe depending on your age and gender.

I blame this confusion on those providing us so-called information, and I have zero respect for those who are supposed to be in the know speaking off the cuff and trying to cast blame elsewhere.

Case in point, Premier Doug Ford blames youth for being a big cause of the virus right now. He seems oblivious that youth are essential workers in grocery stores and drugstores, not to mention other “essential” services like the LCBO. You can’t have them not go to work. Thanks to Ford, there are no paid sick days, so youth with symptoms who need to work, go to work.

Then they go home to their roommate(s), especially in places like Toronto where they can’t afford rent as individuals. And they can’t be vaccinated yet, they are way, way, way down the list. Are they the problem? Don’t patronize people for doing what you want them to do. Or go ahead, because you won’t be sitting as premier again because they will vote you out.

If the youth don’t vote you out, the small businesses surely will. I am shocked at how unscientific the entire pandemic closure system has been. Why is the LCBO open but gyms are not, given that each is essential to different people with different needs and addictions? Why is Walmart open 100  per cent, but small businesses that sell everything except groceries are not (though it seems the government has finally addressed this loophole for big business)? Why were stores in malls open but restaurants closed? Why are hairdressers being penalized? I suppose Ford needs an excuse to continue to grow his mullet?

I have even less respect for those keeping information from us, like characters in the movie A Few Good Men who imply: “You can’t handle the truth.” We need more information in COVID case reporting. We should be able to get anonymous aggregate data to show us why some things are open and others aren’t. If we understand that the majority of cases are cropping up in gyms, hair salons, and restaurants, we will understand the closures. (I note that Quebec has traced a number of cases to one gym recently.) Locally, all I’m seeing are cases in grocery stores and drug stores and airplanes, and a New Year’s Eve party.

Oh, and let’s not forget the latest source of cases, in high schools. Why are they still open? Is it because no one ever dated someone from another high school? I agree, it’s hard to take lockdowns and shutdowns seriously when schools are still open, but let’s not be part of the problem.

Which leads me to the next group that will vote Ford out: teachers. How dare the government not put teachers near the top of the list for vaccinations across the province. I wonder why teachers haven’t cited a health and safety violation, declared it unsafe work, and refused to go teach.

I’ve been a good little hermit, following almost every directive. My mental health has suffered, but I keep trying to toe the line. Sadly, I know that I am not alone in feeling like the closures are becoming more nonsensical by the minute. Something is going to give, and people are getting riskier. Just remember that risk has consequences, from critical comments from others to major health impacts.

It will not be me hosting nor allowing my teens to attend house parties. We are parents first, and friends to our kids second. We also have to be good role models. Any bad behaviour right now puts in jeopardy high school graduations and proms, not to mention summer vacation.

It’s time that we got the facts to back up the closures. If one city is the problem, close them. Close highways. Close schools. Close LCBOs. Don’t punish the entire province. Don’t bankrupt small businesses. Don’t blame youth for doing what you told them to. Don’t risk our teachers in some strange daycare experiment. Don’t hobble our hairstylists.

Give me fact-based decisions, and if you can’t give me fact-based decisions, give me the facts and I’ll make the decisions that are right for me, my family, and my community.

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