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In Your Opinion: Hate The Virus, But Respect It

By Arnold W. Schmidt, Somerset.

In a recent opinion letter that discusses the rule of law and Covid-19, Mark Grieco makes some interesting points.  However I am at a loss about why he did not name the store where four times he witnessed violations of the Governor’s Executive Orders requiring workers and customers to wear face coverings.  By not wearing face coverings, workers and shoppers put everyone else around them at risk.  Name The Store!  Shame The Store!  If people know that a certain store is more likely to be a source where they could contract Covid-19, they may be less likely to shop there.  If the store management sees they are losing customers/business, they are more likely to enforce the rule.  Remember the signs on store fronts that we see?  “No shirt, no shoes, no service.”  How about “No face covering, no service?”    

While Mr. Grieco criticizes our local government for personnel shortages in our Police Department and the outsourcing of our Health Department services, he does not acknowledge that we have recently had relatively little if any property tax increases in Franklin thanks to our local governing body and our economic development.  Franklin recently hired a very experienced and qualified Public Safety Director, whom I believe, with our Mayor, Township Council and Manager, will be addressing any lingering police department deficiencies.  I do agree that the County Health Department, when appropriate, should be more responsive to township noise issues by taking more, if not most, of that responsibility away from the police, who may have more urgent issues to deal with.

That said, through no fault of anyone or anything but Covid-19, unfortunately, tax increases may be coming in the near future.  This is due to lost revenues because of closed restaurants, hotels and many of our smaller and family owned businesses – the other victims of this virus.  This isn’t just in Franklin, it’s nationwide. The longer this virus persists the more stores will go out of business.  To help minimize the potential loss of businesses and livelihoods, not to mention lives, we the people, including business owners, need to step up and do our part.  That means respecting the virus to help rid ourselves of it.  This means wearing face coverings, continued social distancing and more frequent hand washing.  This virus may have slowed for now in some areas of the country but it is dramatically rising in other areas and around the world.  It appears this is not going away any time soon. 

Vanity and arrogance are detrimental attitudes when trying to help prevent our friends, family and neighbors from getting sick, or worse.      

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