13 Mar An open letter to our leaders
TO OUR LEADERS…
We are not scared.
We are not frightened.
We are not alarmed.
We are not panicked, panicky, or panicking.
We are not nervous, fearful, or fear-filled.
We are not anxiety-ridden, dreadful, terrorized, agitated, hysterical, dismayed, apprehensive, flapped, flustered, frenzied or twitter-pated.
We are not even particularly worried.
What we are is CONCERNED.
Concerned you are not doing what you should be doing.
We are living our lives. We are stocking up on the things we need and the things we may need. We are staying home more. Washing our hands more. Sneezing and coughing into our sleeves more. And we are attempting more to touch our faces less.
We may be texting, posting, tweeting, calling and emailing more. But we are not scared.
What we are, is craving information.
Good, solid, expert information.
Information we can trust.
And a plan. A plan would be good.
What we need is truthful communication about what’s going on here and around the world.
What we need is to know that if something happens, you are going to provide direction and help us. Without question.
What we need, is to understand that our institutions are going to help us.
… help us all.
What we need is to understand.
Understand the plan. Understand the threat… the real threat. Understand what you, our leaders, are doing to protect us.
… to understand if you can’t.
TO OUR PRESS…
We understand and appreciate the importance of your work.
We understand the difference between the TV people and the print people.
We also understand the difference between the national people and the local people.
We appreciate your mission to communicate to us.
We appreciate when you don’t play it up or diminish it, but tell us exactly what’s going on so we understand the threats and the risks and what we can and can’t do.
We also appreciate the updates on availability of toilet paper, but we don’t really need them.
TO ANYONE IN ANY INDUSTRY TRYING TO CONVINCE US OF SOMETHING IN ORDER TO SELL US SOMETHING WE DON’T NEED DURING AN EMERGENCY…
We know who you are.
You are wasting our time and testing our patience.
And when it’s over, we will remember, with enthusiasm, the grifters who treated us as rubes trying to sell us snake oil.
TO YOU WHO DISAGREE WITH US…
We don’t hate you.
We don’t even dislike you.
We only disagree with you.
And that’s allowed.
And sometimes important.
TO OUR NEIGHBORS…
Thank you for waving hello even if we’ve never had a conversation last longer than a few minutes.
Even if we don’t agree on street signage in the neighborhood.
Or how bright the street lights should be.
Or how fast the other neighbor’s kid should drive.
Or anything that seems bigger at any particular moment.
Thank you for being good neighbors.
Thank you for helping us feel not alone.
Thank you for helping us when we need help, listening to us when we need listening to, and supporting us when we need support.
Thank you for sparing a cup of sugar, or a stick of butter, or a cup of milk.
Thank you for the pie, and the cookies, and the casserole.
Please pardon us for not answering the door in person to accept them…
… or delivering the hand-written thank you.
… we’ve been under the weather.
We promise, we’ll get to it. And return the favor if and when you need us to.
TO OUR LEADERS… AGAIN…
Stop telling us you know we are afraid.
We are not.
Instead, be more like our neighbors.