No nation can be great unless its sons and daughters have in them the quality to rise level to the needs of heroic days.World War I Homefront Poster with Quote from Theodore Roosevelt.
These are heroic days and call for all kinds of heroism from Americans. The vast majority of us are hopefully following official directions to stay home and practicing the new mantra of social distancing. Meanwhile, public safety, health and grocery workers are reminding us that heroism is often found in simply doing the ordinary extraordinarily well. While the news may be grim now, there are some green shoots of hope out there.
The Guardian, a British newspaper, is regularly publishing a state by state breakdown of coronavirus cases in the United States here. It is updated daily and shows bar graphs depicting the number of new cases over the previous five days by state. While the national number continues to climb at a worryingly geometric rate, the bar graphs on the right of the chart indicate that Washington state may already be flattening the curve of infection. You may remember that it started testing and instituted radical social distancing earlier than the rest of the country. Unfortunately, the rates in New York and the rest of the country are increasing, but the apparent success on the West Coast gives us hope that the current limitations may be working as intended.
This MarketWatch site has a list of the 15 companies or groups that are working on either a treatment or a vaccine. A lot is going on behind the scenes to bring us to the point where we have the pharmaceutical tools necessary to treat or prevent infections and thus end the need for quarantines. However, any such treatment will need to undergo basic testing for safety and effectiveness.
Finally, a group of Irish engineers invented an open source method for 3d printing of a ventilator. Together with the commitment of some American manufacturers to dedicate production to this need, it offers a way to close the gap in the medical resources needed to treat serious COVID-19 cases and reduce the fatality rate.
I encourage you to remember TR’s comment about what makes great nations. Like our fathers and grandfathers during the two world wars, we can make a difference on our own home fronts. Let’s do it!