Channeling WW2 To Fight COVID19

The other day my sister suggested that the United States has not faced a crisis as challenging as the fight against the Corona virus since World War II.

There are differences of course, most likely of timing — I believe we will beat the curve of COVID19 within months rather than years — but there is much to commend the comparison.

During World War II, Americans all over the country started Victory Gardens to grow their own food, to reduce pressure on the domestic food supply. Individuals volunteered for Red Cross duty, women took jobs in that had once been delegated for men. For the most part, Americans accepted rationing and price controls, on everything from clothing to gasoline.

These days, it is encouraging to see how many Americans are practicing social distancing, how the private sector is working with federal agencies to ramp up delivery of test kits and medications for the virus, how the governors are taking command of their individual ships — mostly without the toxic intrusion of partisan politics. Thursday Vice President Pence announced that construction workers all over the country were donating their face masks and hazmat suits to hospitals, likely to run short as the numbers of those infected climbs.

It is an inspiring sight, to see Americans again rallying for the good of the country, eager to overcome a deadly pandemic. It makes me proud to live in a country where people look after one another, for the greater good of the community.

We will persevere.

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