May letters to Jim: Social distancing and the disappearance of sports

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April showers bring May openings of economies. While most of us have been holed up in our homes trying to flatten the curve, I have been busy combing through all the fan mail I receive from the USPS, that same group that PUTZ, make that POTUS, wants to stop funding. Fortunately, neither rain, nor hail, or bluster from an ass hat was able to prevent them from their task and so I have for you a sample of what’s on my readers’ minds.

Dear Jim,

How has the last month of social distancing, food shortages, and Trump briefings affected you? Have your views changed on the seriousness of COVID-19? Do you feel like we are winning the battle and ready to reopen the country with the hope of returning to normal? Thanks.

A Curious Fan

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Thank you Curious for the questions. The last month has made me realize many things. Some I already believed, some I feared, and some have left me wondering what the hell are people thinking?

I was pretty sure going into this thing that Americans had morphed into a weak and spoiled bunch. Let’s face it, the threat we are facing is not of an enemy invader, or even a dangerous disease nearly as much as we feel we should not have to be inconvenienced.

Too many people in this nation feel they NEED haircuts, new nails, massages, and other luxuries. They are angry because their roots are showing while their kids are driving them up the wall because they have to be around them all day. Seven weeks have turned into a lifetime of sacrifice to many. Imagine if this was how we were wired during the Great Depression or WWII. Our resolve lasted about as long as one of Trump’s news briefings.

I will also admit I was concerned about how dysfunctional this nation was prior to all this. Cultural clashes between the far left and the far right have made the divide in this country the worst I can remember. Now with COVID-19, it is apparent one side, the far right, flat out does not give a rip about anything regarding the well-being of others. They want to appear as being tough, patriotic, and religious, when in fact, they are just a bunch of whining brats. Their devotion to the Covidiot in the Oval Office has convinced me they are only fit to destroy our institutions. They are about as effective as a middle school student council.

My only hope is voters turn on our president and his party and run them off the planet. However, should Trump go full on dictator and refuse to leave power, it would not surprise me in the least if people just sat down at their favorite coffee shop, tuned out the world and went online as if nothing happened. I fear we have no fight in us for the nation we are losing.

Dear Jim,

What do you make of the push to get sports back up and running? Is this a good idea or a disaster waiting to happen?  Thanks. 

A Concerned Citizen

Dear Concerned,

You have every reason to feel concerned. Imagine packed stadiums and arenas cheering on their favorite sports teams. Do you really believe no one will be allowed in who has symptoms of COVID? Stadium security can’t even keep fans from sneaking beer into games. I doubt they will be checking the temperatures of fans. And what are the odds of stadium seats, bathrooms, and concession stands being sterilized?

Angels fans are waiting to see Anthony Rendon on the field. (Claudia Gestro)

Do you really think they will play the games in empty stadiums and arenas?  What a joke. How do you suppose owners make money when no one pays through the nose to attend a game? The NFL has a hard enough time keeping the flu, colds, MRSA, and even athlete’s feet from running amuck inside locker rooms. Do we think they are going to keep COVID out of them?

What happens when baseball nears the post season or football reaches the midway mark right smack in the middle of the arrival of the second wave of COVID? Basketball has been on hiatus for two months and we think it will just pick right up where it left off so there can be a postseason.

And let’s not forget college athletics. What happens when there is an outbreak that forces Alabama, Auburn, and LSU to close up school. What if the SEC has to shut down? Does the PAC 12 finally land a team in the football playoffs while Alabama, Georgia, and LSU sit out?

Maybe I am in a minority, but I would prefer we find a vaccine before we find a way to resume sports.

Dear Jim,

It appears Trump’s poll numbers are finally taking a hit. What happens in the election in November? Thanks. A Political Junkie

Dear Junkie,

November is a lifetime away. It would be nice to think Trump finally jumped the shark with his recent medical advice regarding injecting disinfectant to kill the virus. However, by the time this article runs, there is no telling how many more things he will have said that leave us wondering how he has managed to make it so far in life.

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We know Trump will go to any length to get what he wants. We know he is willing to incite violence from a fan base devoted to him. He will say anything and then deny it. He will also push and abuse his power to no limit. All this adds up to an election that will be volatile at best and disregarded by Trump at the worst.

Then there are the Democrats who have a great history of shooting themselves in the foot. Yes, they could blow all this. Already, the story of Biden assaulting a woman seems to have legs. Who knows what comes of it? There is no guarantee Bernie Sanders and his bunch get on board and come out to vote for Joe. If this accusation about Biden is true and he is forced to drop out as a result, will Democrats turn to Sanders or will they look to someone like Governor Cuomo of New York?

The political waters look mighty choppy between now and November.

Dear Jim,

What did you think of Vice President Pence visiting coronavirus patients at the Mayo Clinic and disregarding the hospital’s rules to wear a mask? What message does it send us when one of our leaders refuses to follow healthy protocols? Thanks.

A Worried Citizen

Dear Worried,

Pence was sending Americans a message of hope, one to help us see a light at the end of the tunnel. You see, by refusing to wear a mask, Pence has made each of us feel there is a chance people like him, and hopefully his boss too, will get sick and pay the price for their arrogance.

Trumpian arrogance

Some will argue he was projecting strength during a crisis. To quote our president, “Wrong!”

How can you be viewed as strong when you ignore wearing a mask but still follow through with the elbow tap greeting he gave to doctors and patients? I get that Pence is a pretty religious guy and probably never celebrated Halloween. He is liable to think if he wears a protective mask it is a sign of giving into Satan. How can he be viewed as a strong God loving man and wear a mask while elbow tapping like he is the lone white guy trying to dance on Soul Train?

The only thing Pence can do now to make up for this is to report to work at the White House in a week while feeling a bit under the weather, sit next to the president during an Oval Office butt kissing session, and then infect everyone in the room. This is why I say his visit gives us hope.

Dear Jim,

As a retired teacher, don’t you feel terrible for graduating seniors who are missing out on all the end of the year activities like prom and graduation? And what about all the other students who did not get to say good-bye to their friends, receive letters of promotion to the next grade level, or thank their teachers for a wonderful school year? Is there any way we can make this up to them?  Thanks.

A Sad Parent

Dear Sad,

Maybe your kids were among the protestors at Huntington Beach (YouTube)

It’s not the end of the world. Kids missing out on prom and graduation is not nearly as bad as young men having to look forward to hopping on a plane and being sent to the jungles of Vietnam. It’s not as bad as teens having to drop out of school to work the farm because mom is now Rosie the Riveter while dad has gone off to fight the Nazis.

Look at it this way. You just saved yourself a boatload of money needed to pay for all the end of the year activities that we have blown out of proportion. That’s money you can use to purchase toilet paper on the black market.

As for the other kids, be happy for them. It looks like they get to return to school for the coming year in July. Just imagine how fun your childhood would have been if instead of swimming, baseball, camp, and not having a care in the world you got to spend your summer months catching up on all the home school work you and your parents blew off.

Until next month, just remember, the reason your check from Donny has not arrived is because the USPS is too busy delivering my fan mail. Stay healthy and be safe.