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  • Matthew Harms

Quarantine: Day 3



Amazing how so much emotion can drain in one day. That probably just means that it will be back with a vengeance tomorrow, but for today it was reflection and acceptance that has gotten me through this far. While I was reminded that some things will never change, which I will get into shortly, I was also shown that there are still people out there who care and are doing all that they can to uplift others through these trying times.

What hasn’t changed today? The ignorance and selfishness of our elected officials, or 95% of them at least. Also, the ignorance and stupidity that is automatically attributed to the blind party allegiance that comes from far too many of our citizens who believe against reason that these folks are going to save them or have their best interests at heart. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but all of those in charge are humans just like you and me. That means they make mistakes, and as continually evident, some of these mistakes are massive and far-reaching.

If I have to read about one more Democrat or Republican blaming the other party for the fact that we still do not have a “Coronavirus stimulus package” approved yet I am going to wish I actually had the damn virus. One of the biggest problems with our government is that nothing is done “easily.” For those who have not read the text of the proposed bills that keeps getting declined, I can tell you that it is a farce.

Why are corporate bailouts for the airlines part of the same stimulus for the average citizen who needs those checks to survive? Are our elected officials that lazy that they cannot comprehend drafting separate bills so that it would be easier to hash out where the differences really lie? Or would it be fair to say that these bills are packaged in this fashion to elicit this exact kind of division? It is very easy to finger point when no one has a blessed idea what the hell they are fighting over anyway.

As for the actual stimulus itself, as Americans we should probably look to reject the government handout regardless. And yes that pains me to write, as I personally know how incomes have been slashed through this crisis. But if there was a more holistic approach taken; defer all household bills and work out a repayment system where the amounts owed are spread out over time or added to the back end, at the cost to the companies involved or through negative interest rate corporate borrowing as they have already been doing for so long, then most of us would not need nearly as much of this package anyway. But heavens forbid that a politician upset a corporation who pumps money into their campaigns.

What has changed? Well, that is a little more promising in my eyes. I have never had so many people reach out to see how people are holding up and to ask if, and how, they could be of assistance. And I don’t mean family and close friends where that reaction would be instinctive and expected. I am referring to coworkers, casual associates and random strangers on the street. I never realized how much it could mean to know that there are actually people out there who are normal and care about others, not hoarding random shit or trying to make a profit off of other people’s misfortune.

I also noticed a massive drop in the amount of people outside. Maybe that is the workings of my own imagination, but I drove around for at least two hours today to keep my sanity and build up work projects for when this all blows over and it was eerie how few people were out. For the first time ever, I saw more cops set up for speed traps than cars to catch. Probably not a great appropriation of tax dollars, but I digress. Maybe people are finally getting the message.

Regardless of all those events, I am still torn on where we go from here. At the rate our officials make progress Day 3 might as well be Day 30 or Day 300. We the people need to ensure that unqualified morons never get elected to public office again. And if they do, that they cannot stay there indefinitely and ruin the world for generations to come. It may not sound Constitutional to think that there should be some kind of required test to assume public office just because the founding fathers never wrote it into the Bill of Rights, but that is also why we have Amendments to said Constitution.

What I am about to say probably holds true for most of the country, but I will focus solely on New York since that is where my experience lies. To practice just about any form of employment where the public safety and well being could be compromised requires a license. In case I sound like a lunatic, here is a brief list that definitely applies to NYS but also many other states and federally as well, I am sure.

Barber

Cosmetologist

Nail Specialty

Notary Public

Automobile Broker

Real Estate Agent

Home Inspector

Insurance agent (all types)

I could go on and on and on. If you don’t believe me consult your own states Department of State website to see what occupations require licenses. So, with that said, dare I ask why no one has ever thought that politicians should have to take a test before being allowed to engage in the practice of politics? Who stands to hurt more people; the callous barber or an unhinged politician? This is what we have been experiencing for decades now, but the issue is getting worse.

At least in the past our unqualified politicians were at least qualified at something else. They were lawyers, successful business owners, or came from a long line of politicians who could at least leverage some of their family experience to deliver for the American people. Now we have folks the likes of AOC who is nothing more than a washed up bartender who clung to Bernie’s coat tails and President Trump who is a 6-time bankruptcy champion. Neither one are capable of running a moral and ethical personal business venture, yet lunatics on both sides of the aisle praise each as if they are the second coming of the Messiah.

On that note, I will end with my biggest lesson of the day. And it is something I am guilty of as well. Please don’t waste your quarantine days posting ignorant political memes. Unless you have some type of research to back up what you are posting, you are doing more harm than good. Any moron, and unfortunately many morons, can do just that — scour their newsfeed and throw slander at a politician who has a different view than you do. In times like this, remember that opinions, much the same as politicians, are like assholes — everyone has one and they all stink as far as others are concerned.

Only we the people have a chance of getting through this together. But we are also burdened with the monumental task of rebuilding all that is broken in this world so that we, our children and our children’s children are not condemned to continue repeating it.

God Bless America.

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