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Niagara Falls
Friday, July 12, 2024
Editorial: Reflections and a look ahead

Remember more than 700 days ago, when life as we thought was normal shut down for what many figured would be a few weeks to “crush the curve” of COVID-19?

Remember how hesitant our leaders were to even consider imposing mask mandates, let alone full-on societal shutdowns?

Remember that millions died worldwide? Remember the selfless efforts of those on the front lines of the COVID response?

Long before we had ever heard – or feared – that there might be a second wave, or third or … we thought we might be able to quickly wrestle COVID into submission.

So much has changed as we all struggle to figure out what “normal” is going to look like for the near future. Our lives, our psyches and our attitudes toward many things – especially the importance of a robust public health policy – have no doubt been altered irrevocably.

Two years of a global pandemic, amid repeated, unprecedented government-ordered shutdowns of society and businesses, will do that.

As of this week, it seems – again, we hope – that COVID is in the rear-view mirror. It’s not gone, but it seems to be manageable now. Thank goodness. And heartfelt thanks to all who did their part to make it so.

Like any historic, world-changing event, the pandemic gave us much to reflect on. It also leaves a legacy of its own odd lexicon, unconventional words and phrases we might never have known or used otherwise in everyday conversation – and which we are not likely to forget.

Among them: antigen test, PCR, contact tracing, coronavirus, herd immunity, incubation period, N95, reproductive rate, social distancing, physical distancing, super spreader, stay-at-home order, transmission, viral shedding, ventilator, vaccine, Pfizer, Moderna, variants, Delta, Omicron, third wave, fourth wave, flattening the curve, masking up and PPE.

It has not been an easy two years. Many people lost their lives and, in turn, the lockdowns were huge asks of individuals, organizations, businesses and society writ large.

We’ve always preached tolerance and patience throughout this pandemic and we want that to continue.

We also urge everyone to patronize the local shops and businesses that have been the backbone of our community these two years while weathering some really tough times.

And on top of that, support and be kind to one another – no matter what your differences may be. Now is the time for all of us to be pulling in the same direction.

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