8/21/20 How FCS Should Respond to Covid From Now On


First, I recognize that Covid is a deadly disease that has infected and killed many.  Some FCS members have been infected.  Four FCS members have contracted it, that I know of – fortunately, they have all recovered.  (That’s 1.4% of our 304 members, which is slightly below the U.S. infected rate of 1.6%.)  Many FCS members know someone who was or is or has been infected.  Some FCS members know someone who died due to complications from Covid.  One man that I knew (a non-FCS member) has died from it.  He was around 65 years old and was healthy before he contracted it.

Being in the health profession for 34 years, I understand the need for certain restrictions on large gatherings of people near each other.  I am less understanding of the need for masks (due to changing guidance from the experts, statements from the mask manufacturers themselves regarding their masks’ effectiveness, and many more reasons).  I am also less understanding of restricting people from working unless they’re performing an “essential service” and forcing them to shelter-in-place.  Such government orders have caused many people financial ruin, whose jobs were not considered “essential services.”  I would be lying if I said that Covid hasn’t impacted me financially.

Also, some state and local government orders have had nothing to do science and instead appear to restrict things to show people that they are “doing something.”  (Being a state employee of 25 years, I have often lived with the pressure that is put on us to “Do something now!”)  Here are a few examples of probable “do something now” orders:

  • Lake Decker has been closed twice to boats this year (once in the spring and once in the summer); however, kayaks, fishing from the shore, and swimming has never been restricted.  Conclusion: boats spread Covid, but kayaks, shore fishermen, and swimmers don’t.
  • The governor of Michigan has prohibited motorboats from using their motors.  Conclusion: boats don’t spread Covid, but their motors do.
  • The governor of Illinois has prohibited more than two people in a boat but has not issued a similar vehicle order.  Conclusion: three people in a boat spread Covid, but three people in a car don’t.
  • A hike and bike trail in California was closed to bikes.  Conclusion: bikers spread Covid, but hikers don’t.
  • Many states have prohibited drive-in church services but allow drive-through liquor stores.  For example, Mississippi fined churchgoers $500 for going to a drive-in Easter service.  Conclusion: church grounds spread Covid, but liquor stores don’t.
  • In Colorado, a man tossed a ball in a mostly empty park with his 6-year-old daughter when police handcuffed and arrested him over alleged Covid social distancing concerns.  So, is it balls that spread Covid, or is it parks or being close to one’s daughter?  It certainly couldn’t be the unmasked police officers who arrested him.
  • A woman in Pennsylvania was ticketed for going for a drive in her car.  So, is it cars that spread Covid or roads or the act of driving?
  • People watching the sunset in their own cars were ticketed in San Diego.  So, is it cars (again) that spread Covid, or is it sunsets?
  • A man paddleboarding by himself on the ocean was arrested in California.  So, do paddleboards spread Covid, or is it the ocean?
  • Gun stores were closed by a sheriff’s department in Los Angeles, while the same department announced it would free certain prisoners and not respond to certain 911 calls (what could go wrong with that combination?).  So, is it guns that cause Covid or 911 calls?  It certainly can’t be prisoners, or they wouldn’t have been released into the general population.

The World Health Organization estimates that annual flu epidemics worldwide result in about 3 – 5 million severe illness cases and about 250,000 to 500,000 deaths.  Shouldn’t we be sheltering-in-place every year, social distancing, wearing masks, not hosting FCS events, etc., to protect people from getting the flu?  Or how about the swine flu, SARS, Ebola, MERS, etc.?  We didn’t shut down the world when those reared their heads.  We have never had mask-wearing, social distancing, essential services, shelter-in-place, etc., orders on this scale before.  Why is it different this time?

Jesus said in Matthew 5:14-16, “You are the light of the world.  A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.  Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.  Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”  Luke reminded us in Acts 13:47, “For this is what the Lord has commanded us: “‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.’”  Jesus did not add, “unless there is a pandemic” to either exhortation.

Regarding fear, we are also told:

    • “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”  Psalm 23:4
    • “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalm 27:1
    • “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling.”  Psalm 46:1-3
    • “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.  Not as the world gives do I give to you.  Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”  Luke 14:27
    • “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”  2 Timothy 1:7

Therefore, it is my position that a Christian organization should continue to exhibit that we are the light of the world by not exhibiting fear.  We should continue to host events within the confines of government orders, as we are commanded to obey those authorities as they were put in place by God (see Romans 13:1-7).  That means that we’ll have to cancel some events and modify others.  But the show will go on.  We shouldn’t require mask-wearing and social distancing or prohibit handshaking, nor should we prohibit mask-wearing, social distancing, and refraining from handshaking.  However, there is no way to practice social distancing on a fishing boat or in a duck blind, for example, even if we wanted to.

I’ll be happy to provide links regarding the assertions in my column.

Randy Rowley
FCS President

Categories : Columns

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And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.”