This is a scary time for our state, country, world.

We are being forced to self-quarantine, social distance, cut costs and even close businesses in an effort to stop the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

This pandemic is weighing on everyone’s shoulders, and it is our duty to band together during this difficult time, and follow the guidelines that are being set forth to help protect us and our well-being.

Sure, most people will have mild symptoms if they contract it. But, carrying the virus to someone who cannot handle it is the problem. There is no way to tell who has underlying health conditions that will cause them to become critically ill, and possibly die. Is it really so terrible to stay home as much as possible to help flatten the curve?

I understand there are those who still have to work and be in the public, myself included. Try and keep your distance from people. If I am interviewing someone, I am standing 6 feet or more from them. It’s very strange, but I know it is keeping us safe.

We also still need to get groceries and supplies for our homes. I implore you to only buy what you need, and stop hoarding soap, toilet paper, sanitizers. Everyone is in the same boat, and stores shouldn’t have to post signs that limit quantities per customer. That should be a given.

While we see the numbers escalating, there are people viewing this as a joke by intimidating senior citizens who are wearing gloves and masks in the grocery store, coughing all over shelves of food and goods in the stores and even going as far as licking toilet seats. What good is that doing besides getting criminal charges filed against you or getting sick yourself?

As of Tuesday, more than 3,000 Americans, including 63 Pennsylvanians, had succumbed to complications from the virus. Cumberland County reported its first COVID-19-related death last week.

More counties are being issued stay-at-home orders, including Cumberland, because guidelines aren’t being followed.

This is new to all of us, and officials are doing what they can to fight an invisible enemy. Let’s help them by doing all we can to limit exposure and spread, staying home, and stopping the ignorance. Officials also need to take a united front against this virus. It’s time to stop arguing across the aisle and put your heads together to stand united. Work now to fight this instead of working to force things to open back up before they should. Premature actions like that will cripple the economy even further.

The more we do now, the quicker our lives can start to return to normal.

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