Notes from all over

by GDA



The United States of America has survived many crises and we keep going and growing. There have been many depressions, including the Great Depression, and we came out of them stronger than ever. There have been many pandemics or epidemics, including the Swine Flu, Spanish Flu, Polio, etc. and we have survived them. Now we have the coronavirus or COVID-19 and we WILL survive it, too. In fact, we will come out of it stronger than ever, having learned many lessons on how to be prepared. This great 244-year-old country is made up of strong, independent people for the most part. We find ways to make do.
With this disease that originated in China, we are enacting new practices that many thought we would never do. Staying at home is one. Many of our workers are not receiving paychecks, but our President, Donald Trump, and the Congress is trying to help them with $1,200 checks per adult, plus extra money for those on unemployment. Small businesses are being hit the hardest as they rarely have enough cash reserves to pay the overhead when they are closed or to pay salaries. The federal Small Business Administration is helping with grants that probably will be forgiven, for two and a half months of employees' checks. They even made it quite easy to apply.
The hardest thing for Americans is having to stay at home and not being with their friends. Staying at home is tough. Newspapers and the media have been declared essential, so many are staying open. The trouble is, the news is tougher to get to, so newspapers will be smaller for a time. Newspapers are essential, though. They provide the information on what this disease is doing and how to cope with it. Newspapers also look for feel-good stories to let their readers know that life is going on and not to despair.
One of the most important things that we need to happen is to keep our spirits up, don't despair. There are a lot of very good things going on. Companies are stopping their regular production and switching to making masks, respirators, medical material, etc. In Minnesota, the My Pillow owner changed over much of his production to make masks, etc. That is going to cost him,but he is willing to do it. Be thankful we have people like that.
There have been so many acts of kindness and help that have come up, from volunteers delivering groceries, to those making masks and more. We will be stronger after this dreaded disease is beaten down. School districts are providing meals for students on a take-home basis, too.
Last weekend, especially on Palm Sunday, I felt good seeing the number of people out walking or running. There were more vehicles on the road as people just wanted to get out. No, there weren't any groups gathered together, they kept the six-foot intervals or more. The United States was built on independent, resilient people and they will endure this pandemic and keep growing.
One thing that is happening that helps many is the lowering of gas prices. They are at the lowest many have seen. This could hurt the oil companies, though. A reason for this is that Russia and Saudi Arabia lowered their prices to increase sales. Pres. Trump stepped in and this practice may be halted.
Of course, with the government spending $2.2 trillion in aid and no businesses or few operating, the future of our economy is up in the air. Many feel it will take a long time to get back to normal, while others think it will jump back better than ever. The stock market took huge dives, almost going down to the levels of the previous administration, but it has been coming up fast, too. Every American adult will receive a check for $1,200. The trouble is, only 15 percent of that $2.2 trillion goes to the regular people. Yeah, when there is money involved, some people get greedy. In the meantime our national debt climbs to record heights.
The best thing for everyone is to not panic. We are coming together just like we did after Dec. 7, 1941. Some even think this pandemic will make us stronger and I won't argue with them. Have faith in your country, leaders and neighbors. We are all in this together and we will beat it.
In the meantime, scams are arising trying to take advantage of us. There is the Family Scam when phone calls or emails arrive at your home apparently from family asking for money for groceries, etc. If the caller ID is masked, ignore them. Don't send money over the phone. Then there is the Quack Alert from people trying to sell you colloidal silver or aromatherapy to combat the virus. They are fake, hang up. There are also Fake Vaccine calls and fake CDC or WHO calls. Ignore them.
It is hard to believe that there are scam artists out there trying to take advantage of people (mostly seniors) during these times. I know what punishment I would give them.
Anyway, have faith. We are a strong nation and hopefully the rest of the world is, too. We will make it through this and grow. Pray for our leaders. They do need some heavenly guidance.

Thousands have already died from the respiratory disease COVID-19. And over the years, millions have died from smoking-caused cancers (mainly lung, but also kidney and bladder).
Pending in the Minnesota Legislature is a proposal to legalize possession of marijuana by adults and sale of marijuana to adults. Although smoking is always unwise, could there be a more inappropriate time to promote the deadly habit of smoking?
Rather than play footsie with the marijuana lobby, DFLers in the State Legislature should join the Republicans in taking a firm stand against anything that promotes smoking, period.
April 2, 2020 Leonard J. Richards
Bayport, Minn.


Gary wrote a story last week about Zup's project and contractors on site.
I am the only "local" contractor on site. Installed all sheetrock, taped, sanded and doing all the painting.
Ryan Hartway
Hartway Painting &
Wallcovering, LLC
Cook, MN