A sign of mutual support

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself ...” words of Franklin D. Roosevelt, our president during World War II. “Be not afraid,” said Pope St. John Paul II.

Yet look at us now! Fear of the novel coronavirus abounds beyond reason or prudence. There have been pandemics in the past, so why are we behaving so differently with this one? Are we afraid of getting sick or of dying?

More importantly, why are 70 percent to 80 percent of our fellow Americans willing to give up our freedoms for a fake sense of security? We have always needed to learn how to be safe in an unsafe world. Staying locked down in our homes for months or longer is an unrealistic and unwise way to handle the problem.

Is this what public health elites plan to have us do every time there is a serious disease going around? As Benjamin Franklin said, “Those who would give up essential Liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Right now we have neither, and history repeats itself.

Bonnie P. Franz


Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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(12) comments

keyser soze

The thing that annoys me the most is government officials around the country not insisting and unifying on universal mask-wearing. We are in a statistically worsening pandemic, and half the population is going about their business like its February again.

Its nuts!

Officials must impress upon people that everything is certainly NOT normal and extra precautions are a MUST. Based on the success of mask-wearing in other countries, i.e. Germany and South Korea, the easiest way to create temporary herd immunity before a vaccine is to be had is universal mask-wearing.

Sadly, besides the anti-mask people who have whacky unscientific ideas about masks causing carbon dioxide poisoning and compromised immune systems etc., there's another chunk of that population that simply doesn't understand the word "public" in public health. Public health is NOT a “everyone” decides for themselves thing.

The likely upside of everyone wearing masks is enormous, and the downside is a small inconvenience at very little cost. That simple calculus is what could be called colloquially a no-brainer.

Officials, starting at the top, must show real leadership to protect the well-being of all Americans. Officials have to be the adults in the room and tell everyone that if they want the economy up and running again but don't want to lift a finger to do it more safely, then it's not going to work.

Specifically, not only will it not be safe, but it will also lead to much less economic normalization than desired because many people who don't feel safe are less likely to fully participate in economic activity.

Mask It or Casket!!

Holmes -- the real one


Well said, keyser soze


ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY THOUSAND PEOPLE DEAD from COVID-19 virus - so far - and she's shaming people who are careful not to get sick?

That is more than the entire population of Jefferson County.

Does she also think we should ask the town drunk for career advice?

Lord have mercy!

Holmes -- the real one

Great comment, LAW.

"Beyond reason" is basically where Bonnie P. Franz of Ogdensburg currently resides.

This whole "hoax" and "fake news" propaganda tends to bullseye the vulnerable elderly. These are the formerly sweet little old grandmas and grandpas who have been bewildered by all the changes in “this new age" and who not so secretly long for the good old days like it was when they grew up. You know, those times when everyone knew their place and things were just so much simpler.

I encounter quite a few of them each day and they seem eerily the same. They seem nice enough, that is until they start parroting the talking points they picked up from TV, the radio preacher, and/oe YouTube. Then suddenly you think you are listening to a different person entirely.

These are folks who were raised to respect the experts – the doctor, the police, the priest, the boy scout leader – and who have come to distrust them all. They’ll tell you that they respected the office of president of the United States “until Obama got in there and we’ve got to get our country back from those liberals.” They voted for Trump and they resent anyone contradicting him because well, he says the same things they think too.

It’s easy enough to manipulate them into thinking that “all this pandemic nonsense” is an unnecessary distraction from what’s really important – which is, “making America great again, like our president says.” They have no idea that Trump thinks of them sitting out there as drag on the economy, using up social security money. They swallow the “it’s just overreaction” response to Covid-19 because 1) they really don’t understand science, and 2) because defying the recommendation of experts (in favor of what Trump says and does) feels brave and righteous. It’s a way of thumbing their nose at all of those people that they were raised to respect and now distrust.


"the good old days".

Yes, I remember them well.

A frosty two-seater in February; half the corn cobs needed to finish the job at hand. THOSE were the days.

I won't criticize the preceding generations.

BT (Before Trump) there was NEVER an American political leader who lied so incessantly for corrupt personal gain. It's not natural to recognize flagrant evil if you've never been exposed to it before. It just isn't part of one's cognitive map; they are physically incapable of seeing it. It's the way human brains are formed. Maybe, someday, they will experience what Saul of Tarsus did on the road to Damascus. Absent that miracle, they will continue to be taken advantage of by sleazy hucksters, and we will be frustrated that their eyes are clouded. to omoimasu

keyser soze

When I see and hear people behave this way, I don't see patriots and I don't see courage. In its place I see selfishness, I see ignorance, and I see the faces of people who seem to think they don’t have any responsibility to society or their fellow citizens. I see people who are so short sighted, they are unable to realize how their very actions have, and continue to take us all in the complete opposite direction of "freedom."

Given the likelihood of the damage their behavior is going to cause in our battle against this disease, these comments should be saved and thrown in their laps if and when Covid-19 comes to their doorsteps, and it probably will.

And as long as we are throwing quotes around:

“The moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped.”

-Hubert H. Humphrey


I couldn't agree more with your description of the people who this letter writer speaks for! All rights for themselves with no responsibility to the community they're a part of. It's shameful.


Oh my god. “Healthcare elites”? This letter is insane and Bonnie should be ashamed of herself. I realize that education and critical thinking skills are out of fashion over there in crazytown but holy cow it’s worse than I thought. I wonder if the editors here at WDT laugh or cry at these ignorant screeds

hermit thrush

this letter is nuts. covid is extremely dangerous and the shutdowns have been working all around the world to keep people much safer from it than they would otherwise be.




Bonnie needs a history lesson... or doesn't know how to use Google...or both.. 1918 pandemic...San Fran newspaper.."the gauze masks city officials claimed were “99 percent proof against influenza” were in reality hardly effective at all. San Francisco’s relatively low infection rates in October were probably due to well-organized campaigns to quarantine all naval installations before the flu arrived, plus early efforts to close schools, ban social gatherings and close all places of “public amusement.”

It explains why St Lawrence county has more cases that the rest of the adjoining counties combined..

Farmer Liz

I cannot believe this writer is even serious. Afraid of getting sick or dying? DUH. A fake sense of security? Following protocols has reduced the disease in New York to manageable levels. This writer apparently thinks it's perfectly fine to infect grandma.

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