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Pandemic thoughts

If there are no shortages, then why can't I buy a medical mask at the Walmart pharmacy, aka the nation's largest retailer and Arkansas "Quick Stop?"

Without one I'll be turned away, prohibited from boarding a bus, I hear. I did find a few masks, designed for woodworking, at a local hardware store. Unfortunately, only myself and three other Walmart shoppers get to ride the bus with these masks; but at least any wood dust we encounter won't bother us. You see the cleverness in this: If only a few riders are on the bus, we can sit socially distant quite easily.

If pandemics could be solved by nonstop extemporaneous talking on TV, daily tweeting in the early hours, and constantly espousing on matters while knowing little about them, this virus would be on its way out the door by now with its tail between its legs, overpowered by logic and bombastic braggadocio.

The Peter Principle is proved once again: Executives truly are often promoted one level beyond their level of competency ... or maybe it's 500 times their level of competency in our case.

DANNY HANCOCK

Lonoke

Doing best for state

Shame on the Democrat-Gazette's Dana Kelley for his column on the shelter-in-place order in Michigan, where there are over 30,000 cases of covid-19 and 80-100 new deaths every day. Shame on Kelley for mocking Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's efforts to protect the people of her state with the best knowledge and strategies she and her advisers know. Shame on Kelley that he would join in the politically motivated frenzy incited by the president.

Like Governor Hutchinson, Governor Whitmer is taking actions best suited to her state, and instead of celebrating thugs defiantly marching in the streets to "liberate" the state, we should honor those people in Michigan and across the nation who are doing their best to stop this insidious invader. Far better to look back and realize we over-reacted than the opposite.

JOANNE MATSON

Little Rock

Would make it worse

In a presidential election year when an incumbent is seeking re-election, we must ask ourselves, "Are we better off now than we were four years ago?" With businesses failing all around us, and as we shelter in our own homes and behind masks, and as our children are kept from school and from each other, and as our president uses his press briefings as a platform for dispersing lies in hopes of his re-election, I've never in my life seen things in such an awful mess. The 2008-2009 recession was bad; this is disastrous, and all of us rushing back to work would make things even worse.

My dog Rosie would have been a better president than the man we have "leading" our nation.

DOUG STOWE

Eureka Springs

Want kids to succeed

As a parent, I will do anything I can to help my child succeed and excel. If that means sacrificing financially, our family has and is willing to do this. However, no family should have to struggle to make sure their child gets the best education.

My son Spencer struggles with anxiety, which has a major impact on his learning abilities and his social comfort in certain settings. Traditional schools are great, but traditional simply does not work for Spencer. It is important for children, and their parents, to have options when it comes to where and how they receive an education. Just like all of our children have different personalities and talents, they learn differently too.

I am confident that a new learning environment for Spencer, one that takes his anxiety-driven behavior issues into consideration, would be a game changer. I believe in his abilities and his desire to learn, but without the right environment, we are grappling with issues out of his control. Spencer's success in education will not only provide him a better future, but it will also give him the confidence he needs to make a positive impact on society. Isn't that what we all want for our children? A program like the Succeed Scholarship would not only change the trajectory of Spencer and other children's lives, but it would also impact families in a way that would be felt for generations.

STACEY STANLEY

Rogers

New Know Nothings

The United States has always had a vocal and divisive minority. Before the Civil War, the Know Nothing Party was anti-Catholic, anti-immigrant and xenophobic. Following the war, the Ku Klux Klan took over the mantle and then had a resurgence of political influence in the 1920s and, again, in the 1960s. The Klan has apparently been replaced by the new Know Nothing Party. Still anti-immigrant and xenophobic, the latest iteration adds racists as well as science-deniers to its ranks. For the Know Nothings, climate change and covid-19 are hoaxes. It will be interesting to see if ignorance is an effective defense against a potentially deadly virus. It seems to be working well, so far, for the leader of their party in the White House.

For the rest of us, it might be a good idea to listen to the scientists and take the steps they recommend to slow the spread of this disease. In time, scientists will produce a treatment and/or vaccine to deal with this pandemic. Unfortunately, it doesn't appear we'll ever see a cure for intolerance and ignorance.

MIKE FOX

Conway

Editorial on 04/27/2020

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