Herd immunity fiasco
What have State Sens. Halloran of Hastings and Erdman of Bayard been doing in their spare time, playing golf? Have they read any information about COVID-19 or watched the news lately?
If they want us all to become infected so we can develop “herd immunity,” I am curious as to which 6-10% of the herd they are willing to cull to achieve that? Seniors? The homeless? Health care workers? Which of their family members are they willing to sacrifice on the altar of the almighty dollar so we can all get back to business as usual?
Thank God for Gov. Ricketts and Dr. Adi Pour and all the other experts we are so lucky to have in Nebraska. As for the aforementioned senators, why don’t you go visit a hospital in Grand Island and pitch your idea to the doctors there?
Nancy Dickinson, Omaha
Only the strong?
In the Omaha World-Herald, Sen. Steve Erdman of Bayard and Sen. Steve Halloran of Hastings suggested that COVID-19 has been overblown and the best and fastest way to defeat the virus is to let the people of Nebraska become infected and build up a so-called “herd immunity.”
We do not know at this time if a human being is able to build up an immunity to COVID-19. The senators are very dangerous in their speculation of the virus. We know very little about it.
To allow the people of Nebraska to congregate would be at least a death sentence to many adults and children, alike. This attitude is called “Only the strong should survive,” which I feel is a poor way to run a government. It betrays all this country stands for: “Leave no man behind.”
With this attitude of “herd immunity,” we are placing ourselves and our children possibly on the altar of death. It took time for this COVID-19 virus to become a pandemic. It will take time for the WHO, health organizations and others to logically defeat this virus.
Remember: “Fools rush in where Angels fear to tread.”
Linda Kilpatrick, Omaha
Park closures go too far
Recently Mayor Stothert closed all the parks. I believe it was a shotgun response to a situation that could have been dealt with selectively.
Her justification was that people were, despite warnings, still using the athletic fields and basketball courts. Why not close those venues only and use police patrols to enforce compliance instead of indiscriminately closing all the parks? She’s punishing the entire city for the sins of a few.
Yet, inconsistently, golf courses will remain open. She must believe the golfers will practice social distancing when commiserating after each hole.
George Mills, Omaha
Kudos to Stothert; wear masks
I want first to congratulate Mayor Stothert on her impressive leadership during this time of crisis in our city. In my opinion, she has been a voice of calm and intelligence and compassion during a time when politics have become so deadly disrupting for our dedicated and courageous medical professionals.
Second, a recent article in Nature, about the most highly rated scientific journal in the world, provides evidence that by wearing a mask, people who are infected with COVID-19 can protect others from becoming infected from their bugs by wearing masks.
I worry that in Omaha, too many of us are still not thinking in those terms. On several grocery shopping trips during the past 12 days, I have been surprised at how few shoppers and even fewer employees are wearing any protective gear — gloves or masks or face shields.
So, if you go shopping and you don’t want to wear a mask or gloves or anything protective because you think you won’t get the virus, will you please wear one to prevent the rest of us from becoming infected?
Bud Shaw, Omaha
Schools have shut down because of COVID-19, and lots of families are giving homeschooling a try for the first time. As any parent will tell you, it’s not an easy job! But, if done right, this could be an opportunity for families to home in on some really important lessons. Nebraska’s lucky to have Sen. Sasse representing us — while I know he works hard at his day job, I’ve been impressed by his commitment to also emphasize civics and Schoolhouse Rock-type basics to young Nebraskans. For sure, we need reminders about the fundamentals and uniqueness of the American system of government.
I’d encourage moms and dads new to this homeschooling thing to prioritize teaching this good news!
Phil Belin, Omaha
MUD workers on the front line
In these anxious times, it is important to follow the guidance of health professionals and community leaders who remind us to stay safe. But it is also important to remember there are those among us who continue to perform essential services.
These are our relatives, friends and neighbors who make sure we continue to have access to food, fuel, prescriptions and other needs for our daily lives.
I want to thank the management and employees of the Metropolitan Utilities District, who have restructured work practices and schedules to remain safe while making sure we have clean drinking water at our taps and efficient natural gas to heat our homes. There is a team spirit at play within MUD, as everyone is committed to delivering uninterrupted service to our ratepayers. These are dedicated professionals 365 days a year, but their efforts now are appreciated more than ever.
Gwen Howard, Omaha
chairperson, MUD Board of Directors
Bostelman deserves reelection
On May 12th, Butler, Colfax and Saunders Counties in Legislative District 23 will have a chance to vote for state senator.
In the race for Legislative District 23, I have endorsed Sen. Bruce Bostelman for reelection. He is a consistent conservative — demonstrated by his voting record in his first term. Bruce has shown he cares about growing agriculture, lowering property taxes, fighting for the Second Amendment and protecting unborn life.
His opponent has donated to Nebraska’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood. She also contributed money to Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election. And she has given money to the Democrat Party and Democrat candidates.
Bruce is the only Republican and only conservative in the race. You can count on him to stand up for your values at the Unicameral in Lincoln and push back on special interests. I encourage you to consider supporting Sen. Bostelman for reelection in the May 12 primary election.
Kay A. Orr, Lincoln
Nebraska governor, 1987-91
Value of early childhood support
This week is the Week of the Young Child, a week dedicated to celebrating the field of early childhood education. It almost goes without saying how important the earliest years and earliest stages are to a person’s development. Countless studies have shown that getting a proper preschool education has a massive impact on graduation and college attendance rates.
Take all of that and multiply it by the current pandemic situation. This crucial job is still essential to support health care workers, first responders and others who aren’t able to work from home and continue to keep what’s left of the economy functioning. They’re also left to keep a sense of normalcy for the children as they deal with the stress and confusion of a truly unprecedented situation. Early childhood educators had a thankless and overlooked job to begin with, and now what they do is even more vital and challenging.
Please take some time this week to thank an early childhood educator. Reflect on how important their job is and how little they’re recognized, especially compared to how indispensable their place in society is. This Week of the Young Child, make sure to praise some truly essential workers.
Sky Rotert, Omaha