. And I should add what I said about there being "no reason" to wear a mask, I should clarify I am talking about small town Oregon where there are no requirements for wearing masks, and in a county with 40,000 people and 8 Covid cases (with a lot of testing being done). In
's example, there was a requirement to wear masks, and some idiot being ridiculous about it.
To answer your question about herd immunity, perhaps there have not been enough cases for it in Oregon, but I wonder if there is another explanation for why we have been light while CA and WA have been hit heavy. There were lots of children with severe illness in the schools earlier in the year. Perhaps they somehow provided a vector that changed the virus here. Or maybe our weather is having some strange effect. Whatever the case, if people are not infected, then there can be no herd immunity anyway.
What I am against is illogical, fear based measures, doing things that are extreme to make people feel better that are not based on science (such as hosing down beach sand), and not considering the bigger picture of everything that is being affected in the name of disease control.
It might seem like I am agreeing with some politics, but what I believe is that there is no utopia of belief where a "side" is right. Rather, I believe every individual topic should be weighed and decided on. And within a topic, there are multiple things I might agree or disagree with. This seems to be unpopular, since if I agree with one thing, some will think I am affiliated with certain political beliefs, but if I agree with another thing, some will think the opposite. Why can't we make individual decisions about everything, without having to feel that beliefs are grouped together in enormous clumps and that people are defined by those clumps of beliefs?
I can read an article from an "evil" source, and sift through what I believe may be factual or just opinion. Then I can read an opposite perspective and see which makes the most sense to me. Many people I meet would like to have everything pre-sorted by a safe source, almost as if they are afraid if they think for themselves they might get off track. These are people from all political persuasions.
Two good riding friends used to go out with me and discuss politics (they enjoyed the topic, I did not). They were on extreme opposite ends of the spectrum. I found that I agreed with many ideas of both of them. They actually got along quite well, in part because each had some views that were not at all in line with the politics they aligned with. They helped me learn that you can never put people into a box, or think you understand how they might think about one topic based on what they think about another topic. I've seen this with co-workers as well, and I think Oregon is a kind of interesting state because it has extremes of political beliefs within the state that mix together. This means that people become a sort of mix of beliefs, and you might find right-wing types that are extremely into environmentalism, and left-wing types who are very into gun rights. I like debates because I consider that I might change my mind. Often I do. This is something I believe is healthy, a willingness to change your mind when better information comes to your attention.
My job in health care is not political. Diseases and human bodies behave the way they do without any affiliation. When my patients come in, they often want to tell me about their beliefs. They'll say, "I hate the president, he's ruining everything." I'll say, "Yes, it's terrible." The next patient will come in and say, "Finally our country has good leadership. I feel good about it." I'll say, "Isn't it wonderful?" Because it's not important if I believe the way they do. What is important is that they feel supported, because most people do not trust those who disagree with them, and have a strong bias that those who believe other than they do may not be good people. Stress is an enemy of healing. By agreeing with patients, I have found the barriers go down that might prevent them from listening to and cooperating with important and completely non-political issues such as blood glucose control, antibiotic resistance, side effects of medications, and risks vs benefits of being on blood thinners.
I've heard that if you are not completely for every Covid measure, or if you think businesses could open in some areas, you must have certain persuasions. But I think some of us are not extreme and want to merely find a place where we can balance the bad effects from a deadly virus with the bad effects from the responses trying to prevent the spread of disease. I'm not sure why it needs to be all or nothing, and although I don't see why many business should not open again, it's not because I think everyone should rush out to big concerts again. Or that we should paint flags on our bodies and scream about freedom. It's because most of our small businesses here only ever have one or two people in them at a time, and so with safety measures in place there's really no reason why they can't open. If our big grocery stores are "safe" with a hundred people milling around inside, then the fabric store and mattress store, the bakery and all the other stores also should be able to open with that same measure of safety.
So hopefully none of you will think this post is talking about politics, rather I am trying to discuss why I think having a discussion about Covid can bring up many topics without taking a side on politics and becoming offensive, heated or impolite.