Tom Nelson
Op Ed

Please Honor Interdependence Day(s)

We’re all in this pandemic together. Please do your part.

By - Jul 7th, 2020 04:19 pm
"We Are In This Together," by Fred Kaems. Photo courtesy of Kari Kaems.

“We Are In This Together,” by Fred Kaems. Photo courtesy of Kari Kaems.

Last weekend, we celebrated Independence Day, our salute to America’s birth and for the history buffs, an opportunity to recall a date in 1826, when Presidents John Adams and Thomas Jefferson passed away on the same Fourth of July, a sad, but altogether fitting historical coincidence.

This year felt especially satisfying I’m sure, as we’ve all been constrained by COVID 19. So the chance to watch some fireworks and enjoy some sunny summer weather made for a sense of, well independence.

But it should be remembered, the 2020 pandemic is far from over. Confirmed cases of coronavirus continue to climb in Wisconsin, with the number passing 32,000.

According to the Wisconsin Department of Health & Human Services, best practices continue to include social distancing and wearing a mask.

Most people are wearing them everywhere in public—we wear them here at our administrative offices.  Many businesses have made wearing them a requirement for entry.  They know it’s far better to be safe than sorry

But some people are less cautious. Some consider it a point of personal freedom, a matter of, well, independence to go mask-free. Sure, freedom and independence are American distinctions, but let’s not forget, so is personal responsibility.

So while we’re celebrating independence, let’s carefully consider its corollary: interdependence.  

We rely on each other for so much. We rely on the farmer and the grocer for our food, on doctors, nurses and caregivers to ensure our health and well-being, and on our friends and family for everything that makes the pursuit of happiness worthwhile.

We’re independent, but we’re also interdependent.

Do your part. Wear a mask in public. Protect yourself. Protect others. Protect businesses. Protect the community. Consider it patriotic. Consider it a civic virtue.

The virtue of Interdependence Day.

Tom Nelson, Outagamie County executive.

More about the Coronavirus Pandemic

Read more about Coronavirus Pandemic here

Categories: Health, Op-Ed, Politics

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