Corona Chaos

Lately, I’ve seen the best and worst of times, because disaster, crisis, epidemic, war, and our current pandemic bring out the best and the worst in people and companies, and that’s what inspired this blog post.

Last week, I ventured out to Walmart for things my family (those living in the house I live in) needed.

On the way into the store, I saw the parking lot littered with masks, gloves and disinfectant wipes. Yes, they’re disposable, but the parking lot certainly wasn’t the place to dispose of them. I sure wouldn’t want to be the Walmart employee on parking lot clean-up duty.

I saw signs all over the store limiting the purchase of in-demand items – water, toilet paper, Kleenex, paper towels, hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, and cleaners, soap, ground beef, chicken, ground turkey, frozen entrees, frozen vegetables, and canned goods. People selfishly disregarded those signs, sure that they didn’t apply to them, and loaded their carts. Thankfully Walmart employees enforced the limits so that more people had access to items necessary for daily life.

Purell and Germ-X haven’t shuttered their doors. Perdue, Progresso, Green Giant, and Weaver Chicken are still in business. Scotties, Kleenex and Angel Soft haven’t burned down. Someone decided to stock up on toilet paper, and the chase was on. These goods became highly desirable, and if 12 of them were good, a case of them was surely better.

We have no hand sanitizer, and I haven’t been able to find it anywhere. Folks have cleaned out stores in-person and online. My family and I wash our hands frequently with antibacterial soap, but I’d feel more comfortable if we had a couple of bottles of hand sanitizer on hand. I’m not looking for a case. Hoarders who’ve amassed a hefty stockpile of hand sanitizer may end up losing when they have to toss out some of their expired stash.

Donald Trump has been negligent and irresponsible when setting Easter as a goal for reopening the United States economy as well as seeing churches packed with worshippers. That would surely put an end to social distancing as people are put back in harm’s way. Those two gems came about after a conference call with business and evangelical leaders. Talk about a political agenda…okay, I’ll spare you, because the language I’d use would make a sailor blush.

We’ve already topped China for the most coronavirus cases in the world. Are we looking to cement our stranglehold on that top spot?

I’m pleased to say that according to the Associated Press, state governors and local officials are the ones who will decide when to re-open their economies, which were shuttered in an attempt to slow the coronavirus spread. “The Constitution largely gives states the authority to regulate their own affairs.”

What has been done for the first responders and healthcare heroes – the folks on the front lines of this pandemic put their lives at risk every day. How can we in good conscious let them run out of necessary personal protective equipment (PPE)?

Stanley Black & Decker has stepped up and donated 50,000 face masks of a higher grade than the sought after medical N95 masks to help alleviate the critical shortage of this vital protection hospital staff and first responders are experiencing. Formerly known as The Stanley Works, the Fortune 500 manufacturer of household hardware and industrial tools as well as a provider of security products, is headquartered in New Britain, CT.

Calabasas, CA-based Harbor Freight, a discount equipment and tool retailer with 1,000 outlets in 48 states, is donating all of its face shields, gloves and face masks to local hospitals.

According to Car and Driver, Ford has announced that it is partnering with 3M to manufacture powered air-purifying respirators as part of its response to the COVID-19 pandemic. These respirators are often called positive-pressure masks as they take contaminated air, pull it through a filter, then push it to the sealed mask using an air blower.

The Shine Distillery in Portland, Oregon, has begun manufacturing and giving away hand sanitizer.

Companies including Amazon, Apple, Campbell’s. Capital One, Google, Twitter, Cox Communications, IBM and Intel have employees who can work from home doing so.

Macy’s has announced that it will provide all employees affected by the shutdown of its stores with benefits and compensation.

Verizon, T-Mobile, Google, Sprint, Comcast and Charter have pledged that Americans will remain connected to the Internet for the next 60 days, even if people can’t afford to pay their bills.

It may take a while, but we’ll get through this together.

Drop me a line and share your thoughts. I’d love to hear from you.

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