I was born April 1st 1942 when World War II was almost 4 months old.  My memory goes back as far as VJ Day, the victory over Japan. I remember the block party we had on Brighton 1st Street in Brooklyn in celebration of the end of the war in August of 1945. Since then I have witnessed the following evil shit:

The killing and crippling Polio Epidemic of the forties and early fifties until the Jonas Salk Vaccine was developed through SCIENCE.

Duck and cover drills in 1949 and 1950 in my first and second grades done to make us feel safe if a bomb that could wipe out an entire city should land on our doorstep. That’ll give 7 and 8 year old kids a boost of optimism for their future. 

In June of 1950 the Korean War (deemed “a Police Action”) began and 

resulted in 5 million deaths half of which were Korean civilians. Forty-thousand American soldiers were killed and 100,000 wounded until a truce was agreed to in 1953 but no peace treaty has ever been signed.

Also in 1950, to fuel his own sick ego and gain recognition for his reelection campaign in 1952, Senator Joseph McCarthy began his “Red Scare” trumped-up witch hunt for communists in and out of the US government. Thousands lost their jobs and careers and some their lives. In March of 1954 McCarthy was verbally vanquished by Edward R. Murrow on his on Morrow’s CBS program See It Now. Subsequently, public opinion turned against Senator McCarthy and following thirty-six days of public hearings the special counsel for the Army, Joseph Nye Welch was prompted to ask McCarthy, “Have you no sense of decency sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?” That question is still pertinent of many today.

The Cuban missile crisis which had the world as close to World War III as it has ever been. It was avoided by a winning combination… diplomacy and reason.

The shocking assassination of President John F. Kennedy 57 years ago and we still do not know what really happened.

In 1967 an Arab – Israeli conflict known as the Six Day War.

In 1968 the assassination of the beloved and vaunted religious leader 

Reverend Martin Luther King.

A second assassination in1968 of  Presidential candidate and Former Senator and United States Attorney General Robert Kennedy

The Viet Nam War sanctioned by many administrations and eventually  proven to be bullshit through and through

1973 another Arab Israeli war called the Yom Kippur War..

In 1973 – 1974  there was the impeachment inquiry and resignation in of the 

Presidency by Richard M. Nixon who said “I am not a crook.” Sound familiar?

Three major space program accidents in which 17 American astronauts died. Three on the ground and 14 in flight.

In December of 1981 a documentary called Warming Warning was broadcast on the Thames TV channel in the United Kingdom. It warned of the negative planetary effect of fossil fuels and stated unequivocally their ongoing use would double the CO2 levels in the atmosphere. The poisoning of Earth, our only blue and green oasis in space, continues to occur with full awareness of those who are doing it.

Considering all of the above, the current coronavirus pandemic is the scariest of all. This so mainly because, and I am quoting the former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson when he said about the current White House occupant, “he’s a fucking moron.”   

Other Ways to Get Together by Maxine Margo (GD Max)

The more we get together

Together, together

The more we get together

The happier we’ll be

‘Cause your friends are my friends

And my friends are your friends

The more we get together

The happier we’ll be

I learned this song in kindergarten, and while the spirit of the song

still applies, the way we get together has changed. We used to dance 

in a circle together, while singing the song. Today we Zoom, Skype or

FaceTime to help us connect to our friends, family and workplace.

We are living in uncharted waters, and very scary times, but we need to

power through the best that we can. The realities are stressful, and we have to

find time to take a breather. Even those told to shelter in place, (depends on the 

rules of  your city or town) can take a walk, as long as you socially distance 

yourself from the person in front or behind you. The rule is to stay six feet apart. 

We all need to be mindful, especially for the sake of our elders, and those 

with medical issues, who are more vulnerable to COVID-19, heretofore I will call it IT.  

No one wants to get IT, no one wants to  give IT, so what can we do? I have seen 

Public Service Announcements (PSAs) by health officials and some celebs which say, 

If Sick Stay Home, If Not Sick Stay Home, with the hashtag #ALONE TOGETHER. 

Other PSAs tell you to DO THE FIVE to help stop coronavirus:

1. HANDS Wash them often for 20 seconds

2 .ELBOW Cough into it

3. FACE Don’t touch it

4. FEET Stay more than 3-6ft apart

5. FEEL sick? Stay home, call your primary doctor

We all have to do our part. State and local governments are doing their best

to reduce contact of their citizens. In many areas restaurants, bars, gyms and other

non-essential businesses have been told to close. This is an unprecedented moment in

history, but we have to take this seriously. We will get through IT! 

There is some good news within the context of IT. Mother Nature is getting a break of sorts.

Data obtained by the European Space Agency (ESA) gathered by the Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite which tracks air pollution recorded a sharp decrease in emissions that coincides with the lockdowns in Italy and China. Earth Systems Professor at Stanford, Marshall

Burke stated that two months of pollution reduction “likely has saved the lives of 4,000 kids under 5 and 73,000 adults over 70 in China. 

While the spread of Corona Virus is a top concern and a top priority, seeing the reduction in emissions indicates that people are taking steps to reduce their exposure. Another side story

is that the water in Venice, Italy is getting clearer, and dolphins have been spotted in the canals.

So now more than ever we need to take care of ourselves and take care of each other. 

Seek out a walk in nature, take a forest bath, or a stroll by the water. Check on your neighbors and your loved ones. Be prudent, be calm, be mindful, so you don’t get IT! Right now the new norm is #ALONETOGETHER and if we follow that mantra the happier we will be.