Tuesday, April 21, 2020
Every time I write something for our farm blog - especially when it gets into this territory - I worry that I might sound like I think I "know it all." On the contrary, I know perfectly well that what I know is far less than what I do not know.
But, here are two things I am pretty certain of:
1. Containment requires knowledge of where the item(s) are that you wish to contain.
Part of the reason the invisible man is hard to catch is because you cannot see him. In H.G. Wells' "Invisible Man," it takes a bit of luck and footprints in the snow to deduce his location and finally catch him.
If we would like to move forward with 'opening things back up' then that means we think we are moving to containment of the virus. But, if we are not testing frequently and broadly, we cannot see where it is. It has already been shown multiple times that many individuals do not show symptoms, but they do carry the virus.
If we want the state of Iowa to "re-open" sooner, then we should be sending our comments to Governor Reynolds and our federal government that we want testing and we want it sooner rather than later. Otherwise, we're just hoping we 'get lucky' with it all.
Me. I'd rather be good than lucky. Because even if I am lucky, someone else won't be. And, I am not ok with that.
2. Be Supportive of Those Who Are Potential Vectors for the Virus
We posted earlier in the month our plan for addressing the fact that Tammy and I are potential vectors for the virus because we produce food for others and we deliver that food to multiple people. While we carry a much lower risk than so many other professions, we take our precautions seriously. Why? Selfishly - we do not want to get sick. But, also, we do not want to be the reason someone else falls ill. It's pretty simple.
The great news? The people who get food from us have been wonderful! They have followed our instructions and helped us be as careful as we can be. They understand that we do not want to pass this nasty thing on to others and they see that we do serve some people who do fall into higher risk categories.
Now, let's think about some other possible professions that might be vectors that the virus could travel through. No really - think about some of the people who take appointments for their services. One person after another. I will not go through the process of naming these professions because I'll miss some. But, I know you can think of several that you patronize on a regular basis.
Before we start to protest the inconvenience of being unable to avail ouselves of those services right now, please consider this:
If you happen to be a carrier for Covid-19 and you go to this person, how would you feel if someone was able to show you that YOU were the person that infected them and made them ill... possibly very ill? Even worse, how would they feel if they contracted from you and then they unknowingly transmitted the disease to the remainder of their clients scheduled for that day?
Is your inconvenience worth their well-being? Or perhaps the well-being of other, unknown individuals? I think we can pay that price to avoid that possible cost.
3. Some Positive Suggestions
If you are among those who is not struggling financially because of the pandemic, consider writing a check to some of the people who cannot provide their services to you AS IF you were receiving that service. If you are like us, we have budgeted for these things and we hope these fine people will return to providing their excellent products once we can contain Covid-19. Don't ask for anything special from them. Tell them and show them that you value what they do. Let them know that you look forward to the day when you can see them again. And, go from there.
Once we do contain Covid-19, schedule services with these people as you did before - but be aware that many of them will be swamped with a great deal of catch-up! Be patient and be supportive.
And second, here is a program that Iowa State Auditor Rob Sand has helped to launch called Help Iowans Help Iowans. This is a remarkably simple way that we might be able to help each other out. We can support local restaurants and keep them moving while getting food to people that might be struggling. If this doesn't fit you - that is fine. If it does, consider it as an option to help others.