October 2021

Editor's Note

By Brad kava

A kid in our 5-year-old’s kindergarten class at Rio Del Mar Elementary School tested positive for COVID-19 and the school went right into action.
All the students in the class had to get tested right away on school grounds and then again several days later. None of them tested positive.

That was so reassuring and told me clearly that masks work.

When the pandemic started plenty of science deniers claimed kids were losing their freedom by being forced to wear masks and they argued that youngsters didn’t have the discipline to keep their masks on and distance themselves when necessary. I worried about that also.

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But my boy, Parker, has been stellar about wearing his mask properly, just the way he’s religious about making sure his car seat is buckled and that we all have our seatbelts on and stay off our phones when driving. (His photo is above.)

These kids aren’t stupid. In fact, they are old souls who have the ability to do the right thing even when faced with something scary that makes them uncomfortable.
I can’t tell you how grateful I am to the teachers and administrators who are protecting our children and teaching even the youngest and most fragile of them how to handle one of the most terrifying challenges of our time.

That said, the news this week is that California, the most populous state, has the lowest COVID-19 numbers in the country with 25 cases per 100,000 people Contrast this with maskless Florida, which has 262 cases per 100,000 residents. Our politicians and state workers are clearly doing the right thing encouraging vaccines, masking and distancing, despite criticism from the people who push unfounded rumors about hydroxychloroquine, drinking bleach or taking de-wormers.

They sound convincing but their arguments are more like the ones made by those who don’t believe we landed on the moon or think con trails are chem trails.

It’s ironic that Republicans would spend $275 million attacking Governor Gavin Newsom in spite of his effectively taking charge of the problem. History will look back at the anti-vaxxers and anti-maskers and cringe at their sheer ignorance in what should be a more enlightened age. In the pandemic of 1918 people were jailed or fined for not wearing masks. Were they smarter than us? (When you see the poor quality of the masks they were wearing, you shudder. But they had the right idea.)

One Red Cross public service announcement at the time said “the man or woman or child who will not wear a mask now is a dangerous slacker,” according to a report in history.com. The same holds true today for the anti-science crowd.

Four Santa Cruzans have died from COVID-19 since the arrival of the Delta variant. All of them weren’t vaccinated. What more do you need to know?

We have a chance to beat this thing and we have the tools to live through it. We just need to stop falling for snake oil salesmen.

Thanks for reading and supporting Growing Up in Santa Cruz.

One Comment

  • Bella

    This is a horrific article the fact that you think masks work and are not doing long-term damage to your children and the children and your the classrooms as apalling. You’re creating kids that are afraid of everything and damaging their poor immune system’s by forcing them to wear dirty masks day in and day out and not being able to see their classmates or teachers faces to know what they are feeling or see facial expressions. Writing this type of junk shows that there is no thought put into what is actually happening here in our community and the entire world, stop pushing the agenda of politics on our kids.

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