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September 26, 2021

8/25/2021 2:28:00 PM
Always remember it's a choice
During my sophomore year high school, I had Mrs. Cathy McDonald as my English Teacher. I remember seeing post-it notes, posters on walls, and on her markerboard these three words.
It's a choice.
On the first day of her class, I remember her pointing to these three words on the board.
"It's a choice to complete the assignments, and its a choice if you don't."
With mask mandates being brought back, I can't help but hear these three words again.
I would be dishonest if I believed that the pandemic was over, but unfortunately it is not. The Delta variant of COVID-19 is upon us, and the strain is more contagious than the previous one.
In this situation, we didn't get the choice to have this Delta variant. However we have the choice on how we respond to it.
These mask mandates are back for a myriad of reasons. The Delta strain shows a higher level of spreading, and this strain has a greater chance of spreading regardless if a person has been vaccinated or not.
Businesses are making the choice to enforce mask mandates, and it is our choice to respect them or not.
It is a person's choice to receive the vaccination, and it is a person's choice not to.
While we each have a choice, we need to consider the impact our choice has on others.
I wish that we could go back two months ago, when we had the option to choose whether or not to wear a mask when out and about, and whether or not to get vaccinated.
We each had our reasons on the choice to receive the vaccine or not. I chose to receive the vaccine so someone with greater health issues than myself has a better chance to earn a hospital bed if they need it. I also believed that my risk to be hospitalized with COVID is greater, had I chose not to be vaccinated.
I say that to also say this. I am not someone that will tell someone to hop on the shame train if they choose not to receive the vaccine. I have seen hateful messages from all sides, and I choose not to perpetuate the shameful dialogue. I have also seen adults choosing to have child-like tempers if a mask mandate is to comeback. That behavior is also a choice, a choice I will not condone.
Although if you have the chance to receive the vaccine, I will encourage you to make that choice. I think we all want to go back to a time where we didn't have to wear a mask, and to a time where we didn't have to distance ourselves.
If you receive your vaccine now, you have a greater chance of protecting yourself during the pandemic. Masks vaccines and social distancing are our best ways we can protect ourselves.
A conversation with my doctor this week told me that future mutations might not give us as much choice.
I can't decide for you what choice you need to make. Whatever choice you make, I encourage you to make that choice in order to reduce harm to yourself and to others.
That choice is up to you.

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