In the Boondocks

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Edith Cook

Sep 15, 2020, 2:56:44 PM9/15/20
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Dear Friends and Readers:

Perhaps you are aware that my neighbors are ranchers and farmers who value tradition and are deeply conservative. Recently, when our women’s group got together, I was the only one wearing a mask, and I spoke out about it. Two days later a member emailed a pro-Trump video. I replied—after changing the subject line to ”Natrona Couple’s Ordeal”—with the following.

This is an extension of what I said in our meeting on Thursday. A few days ago (Sept. 5) the Casper Star-Tribune printed the story of Ann Robinson, a former state legislator, and her husband Marv under the headline, 

For one Natrona County couple, the coronavirus is no hoax. 

And they want you to know.

As a result of their ordeal with the coronavirus, Ann Robinson is stricken with a neurological disorder that makes it hard to recall words, while her husband continues to suffer breathing problems. Surviving doesn’t mean a coronavirus infection is no big deal, says Ann. “Surviving means you didn’t die, but it doesn’t mean you’re not going to have problems for the rest of your life from it,” she is quoted in the paper.

The conclusion quotes Robinson’s advice to the public, which is the same as that of the daughter of her friend who died. “Pray for the sick and those who will get sick. Wear masks. Wash your hands. Stop acting like it’s not real.” 

You may read the entire article online—the Casper Star-Tribune, like all news organizations, makes COVID information available to readers without charge.

One more thing you may already know: in keeping with the precepts of Unitarian Universalist Church of Cheyenne, I support Black Lives Matter. Our congregation includes a Muslim couple I have befriended whose daughter was our choir director before she enrolled at University of Colorado. Last month a UUCC virtual service shared a music video the young woman had put together that left me in tears—I’m sure many others reacted as I did. It originated as a violin tribute to a young musician, Elijah McClain, who died as a result of a spurious arrest in Aurora, Colorado, as he walked home after shopping, minding his own business. Lots of tributes to the young man are posted on youtube, some in musical form.

It’s unfortunate that wearing a face mask is denigrated as a political statement—or, as someone quaintly put it, “a fashion statement.” It is neither. It’s a common-sense measure to protect others and oneself. 

Edith Cook

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