The right thing
Gov. Roy Cooper should immediately call the General Assembly into special session and ask the Republican majority to join the Democratic minority in doing the right thing for the citizens of North Carolina. The right thing is to enact and immediately implement the Medicaid expansion that the Cooper administration has proposed. This is the perfect time for Senate Majority Leader Phil Berger to save face and do the right thing for all North Carolinians and the voters in his district.
The theory of public health is that when one citizen is infected with a highly contagious and dangerous disease such as COVID-19, every citizen is at risk. When people are uninsured, they will not go to doctors, thus increasing the risks for us all.
The Republican General Assembly majority’s philosophy seems to be, “I’ve got my health insurance. Why should I worry about the uninsured?” Here’s why: If the uninsured can have insurance (Medicaid), then we are all safer from contagious disease.
Be aware that the COVID-19 epidemic could be followed by even more dangerous viruses.
Our neighbors’ needs
It has been written, “May we live in interesting times.”
That is certainly true now. As we gather ourselves up to prepare for the next coming days and weeks, it is encouraging to look around ourselves.
Our communities are strong. Our leaders are the best. We are well-supported. Medically, it’s hard to imagine a better situation. Emergency services are ready. Business and commercial organizations are all organized and ready to serve.
The local print, broadcast and electronic media are all committed to supplying us with news and timely information.
All in all, it seems we are in great shape.
As we sit in our homes, businesses or offices we might look to the right and to the left and consider our neighbors. What might they need? What about our “more seasoned” acquaintances? Just a quick “check in” with the folks on both sides of us and we will be fine.
So Winston-Salem, take a deep breath, smile at your neighbor and let’s get through this!
To bring healing
“What doth it profit a man to gain the world and lose his soul?”
The Feb. 25 editorial “Affleck’s insights” brought attention to Ben Affleck’s struggles with alcoholism and the mental and emotional issues that come with that. He spoke of having a “basic discomfort all the time” that he was always “trying to make go away,” about how people try to make themselves feel better via eating, drinking, sex, gambling, shopping, etc.
“But that ends up making your life worse,” he observes. “It becomes a vicious cycle you can’t break.”
The secular prescription for Affleck’s difficulties would entail feel-good measures that may, for a time, mitigate the effects manifest in his struggles but that stand impotent in the face of the cause. Only faith in Christ has the power to bring healing to this.
Affleck has enjoyed the best this world has to offer and yet he speaks of contending with an itch no worldly solution can scratch. In none of them — fame, success, wealth, etc. — did he find lasting peace. In none did he find lasting joy. His words about a vicious cycle in which the “real pain starts” is evidence of this.
I gently encourage anyone struggling with similar difficulties to surrender their heart to God. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
School system taking action
Coronavirus has not only affected our economy, but now our school systems as well. When I first heard about a possible minimum two-week closing, I was astonished. As a high school student, I had no clue how the school system would pull this off, especially thinking about how all the staff who get paid by the hour would continue to live a stable life, all the underprivileged students who have to go home to tables with no food and homes with no technology to keep them up to date with assignments. As a more privileged student who doesn’t have those things to worry about when coming home, I couldn’t even imagine how they must be feeling. However, the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County school system has come through with answers to these concerns, and I couldn’t be more surprised with its well prepared and thought out answers.
The school system may not solve every single problem that has been presented, however we can at least be assured that it is taking a promising step forward to insure that students can continue on with receiving an education.
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