The New Normal

Friends… the world has gone sideways. Just two weeks ago I was preparing to take a wonderful trip with my husband for our ninth wedding anniversary (next Monday). Today I am sitting in my dining room fighting with my seven-year-old about having to complete her at home e-learning assignments with one eye glued to my phone/the news waiting for the Governor to deliver his latest restrictions/orders.

I’m watching my friends and neighbors walk around in a shell shocked stupor unsure of what is happening to the world around them. Conflicted with the desire to help the community yet being unable to stay inside and simply do “nothing”. Our family lives a fairly solitary existence and the adjustment hasn’t been too difficult. We’ve been blessed with jobs that will continue to provide for us regardless of what happens in the coming weeks and months. We have enough to eat. I won’t comment on our toilet paper situation *shifty eyes*. Things have been much worse for many of my friends and neighbors as they have lost their jobs or been unable to find supplies in the midst of the chaos.

No one is sure where to go from here as the Government intervenes in a way and on a scale that no one has ever seen before in the United States. Hollywood has given the National Guard and FEMA a bad reputation when in reality they are only doing the jobs they are designed to do. They aren’t the bad guys and as long as you follow instructions there is really nothing to be afraid of. The Army won’t put up with the whining entitled bullshit that the local police endure these days, that much is for certain, but really a national crisis such as this is exactly why these agencies exist in the first place.

Our government is intervening in our daily life in a way that most American’s have never experienced before, but not as some poorly disguised political agenda. No, this crisis is real. The threat is mortal and valid. In some miraculous twist of fate, our government is actually functioning for the good of the people. It’s working exactly as it has always been designed to work the only difference is that this disaster is on a national scale, something we’ve never seen before.

Let’s look back to the early 2000s. Remember Katrina? Remember FEMA and the National Guard showing up to help? Yes, I know there were mistakes made during that specific incident. Aside from those small shortcomings, what happened? As soon as things began to settle and the cleanup effort was successfully underway, FEMA and the National Guard packed up and the local municipalities regained their control. The COVID19 crisis is no different. As soon as the public health threat is neutralized and/or under control, the local governments will get their authority back.

I think most people forget that the local governments have REQUESTED help at a federal level. It’s not like Trump waved some magic wand and now suddenly the local authorities are powerless. No, actually the executive branch does NOT possess the power to do that. It has to be requested at a state and county level.

I know it’s unprecedented and terrifying to watch all of these things unfold especially in such a short period of time, but it’s also encouraging. The system hasn’t collapsed or failed. It’s operating at peak efficiency. That’s exactly what we need during this time of uncertainty and chaos. Let them do their jobs so we can all get back to normal.

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