Well, most of you understood what I was trying to say last night in my long winded post. One of the reasons for my Facebook monologue was as a bit of a social experiment - as I have seen so many aggressive posts on the subject of masks from every camp imaginable. My goal was to see if I could frame an argument in a way that both sides would be able to have their issues addressed without devolving into the name calling and death wishing on their fellow man that I have seen in other forums. And I am proud to say my friends get it - we can have differing thoughts / opinions and while we may not agree with each other all the time, the important thing is that we have social discourse and work toward a common solution that we can all live with. This is not happening in much of America - especially on social media sites that seem to breed intolerance. And this “you are either with us or against us’ nonsense is destroying our Republic. I know I say it a lot - but we are stronger together. We are stronger when we discuss and see the other person’s side because rarely is any issue black and white - and I’m very happy that we could have this conversation as civilized adults.
86 of our loved ones passed away from this disease in the past 24 hours and I can’t think of a way to discuss the positive aspect of that without sounding incredibly cold and heartless. I know it sounds really horrific and inappropriate to say, but in our new bizarre world, the good news is that the death rate dropped to the lowest level in nearly a month. There were 1,000 newly reported out of 9,622 new tests or a 10% positive to test ratio. Granted, it is a Monday so as always I caution reading too much optimism in this information as reporting often lags after a weekend.
ICU cases remained relatively even and hospitalization rates dropped by 78 people. This is the lowest rate since April 13th when reporting got rid of the “presumptive” tag and just reported all cases as positive.
Governor Baker said Massachusetts will be able to resume “more and more activities” when public health data indicates that COVID-19 “is on a sustained downward trend.” He went on to state that the reopening advisory board expects to finalize “concrete plans” on what each phase of reopening will look like, where certain activities and businesses fit into each phase, as well as general business guidance on social distancing, personal protection, and cleaning protocols that all businesses will need to adhere to upon reopening. They met with 23 different industry associations last week and are slated to meet with gaming, labor, museum, and professional sports representatives this week. They are also reviewing more than 475 submissions of written testimony on ideas and suggestions on how to safely reopen. I’m looking forward to some of this information being shared with the rest of us.
The House of Representatives will meet in formal session for the first time in history remotely on Wednesday. We were able to force some compromise on fairness and ability to not have voices silenced - and while still far from perfect, we could only negotiate so much while dealing with a speaker for life that has an 80% majority. We will see how it goes and I am cautiously optimistic. And no worries, you know I will let you know if they end up pulling any stunts.
And here is a huge favor to ask- and I hope you can all share this last little part - I know so many of you want to be a part of the milk distribution program I am involved with and I came up with a way that everyone could help. I designed a t-shirt that you can buy and all of the proceeds would go to the Farmers Feeding Families program. The farmers are donating the milk but we still have to get it trucked, pasteurized, and bottled - all of which has a cost associated with it. Now, I have some really generous friends and the Dairy Farmers of America are contributing a ton as well - but I would love to get even more milk out to those in need and every cent we can raise means more milk for families. I realize this isn’t curing the disease, but for that kid who isn’t getting enough to eat because his parents are sick or out of work- it is everything. And you get a really kick ass t-shirt. I went with the John Deere colors even though my family in Iowa drive red tractors as I thought it added to the farm vibe. So if you can, please go on line and buy a shirt or two or six and they will be shipped directly to your house. The site is: www.farmers.inkify.com and please share with all your friends. And I know many people are struggling with finances right now, so if now isn’t the time to be making donations - do not worry, sharing it far and wide will help the cause so much.
You guys continue to inspire me. Keep doing what you are doing. Let’s keep working toward May 18th to begin phase 1 which means for the next two weeks we need to really crush with social distancing, washing hands, wearing masks when around others, protecting those most at risk by allowing them to stay home, take your temperature often, washing your hands some more, and please - if you feel even a little sick - stay home and have your family stay home as well. If you don’t have anyone to run errands - let me know and if I can’t do it I will find someone who can.
CLICK HERE TO BUY A T-SHIRT