As an elderly overweight person with long-standing type 2 diabetes with a pace-maker, I am told that I am in the most vulnerable group. What really bothers me is the lack of reliable information. The traditional sources of the BBC, the broadsheet press and my local GP all offer conflicting advice. Add to this is the unfortunate tendency of a few people on forums like this but also on the so-called social media, to take something they read somewhere, allow it to develop in their minds, fuelled by their own prejudices, and then spout it out as though it was a fact.
As a Bible-reading Christian, I am ashamed of church authorities allowing meetings to go on as if they are divinely protected. Yes, we believe in divine protection but we must see that is conditional on complying with God's Word as written in the Bible. Disobeying state laws and recommendations is going against what the Bible says and so these churchmen are leading their flock into danger, without divine protection. If you are not a Bible-believer, please do not comment on this.
So, I try to limit my exposure to unseen, undefined sources by staying at home as much as possible - which goes against the advice to exercise more. No more meeting for a chat at a coffee shop. No more rare treats of a meal at my local taverna. Church meetings on Zoom and in house-groups limited to 9 people - but what do I do when we have visitors from many different countries, how reliable is pre-flight testing? Despite the discomfort, I wear a mask when I go for the once-weekly shop. I am expecting a parcel from the UK: what precautions should I take? An advert on TV says use bleach on all all surfaces to kill ALL viruses: no evidence is given, just a bare statement: is it sponsored by companies that produce bleach?
In my confusion, I sympathize with parents who don't want to expose their children at school and also all those who are fearful of going to the hospital for treatment or for visiting: what does someone do if they are newly diagnosed with a bad illness?. My hair is in need of the barber; my feet need the chiropodist; I need to get advice on a current medical matter; I need new spectacles: is it safe to visit these professionals? They might take every care but what about the other clients/patients?
My daughter is going to the expense of changing the desks at school to single-occupancy and is employing an extra teacher to allow for smaller class sizes, down from 9 to 6. She has also bought a good supply of gloves, masks, and cleanser for the teachers and for students who forget. Before the virus, students waited until the previous class had finished and then went in, and the lesson started immediately, but now maybe they must wait while the teacher disinfects herself and the room. But she cannot test each pupil and the evidence of young people passing on the virus is too vague. Am I safe to resume working in the office, having little contact with teachers and students?
Please everyone: don't pass on rumour and bias as if fact.