There are few events throughout history that affected the entire globe and most, like written language or gunpowder, took years to realize its impact. Even the Web took nearly 20 years before half of the world was online. While the moon landing and 9/11 were unquestionably indelible days for this country, the rest of the world was largely indifferent.

All of that has seemingly changed. We have all been dealt the same hand. For once, seemingly, the brightest and most innovative scientists in the world are on the same team, whether they like it or not.

That gives me some optimism, as does the fact that the percentage of people practicing social distancing in each party is now nearly identical (over 90%), while in earlier March, one party had a bare majority exercising caution (53%) (source: USA Today, April 2).

Like any catastrophe, the pandemic has brought out the best and worst in people. During limited necessary travel, I see people waving for no particular reason except to reassure others that we are in this together. Frontline medical professionals are, literally, risking their lives on a daily basis. Many companies, philanthropists (thank you Mr. Kraft), and entertainers have innovated to help any way they can.

Hopefully, this crisis will be remembered more for such acts of selflessness and compassion, than the idiocy of adolescents on spring break, the pastor who gathers thousands to play god with blindly loyal followers, psychopaths coughing on food, and stores selling toilet paper at $10 a roll. Shame.

Robert Beauchesne, Lewiston


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