Alyssa Rosenberg’s April 22 Friday Opinion column, “Biden’s team should stop treating parents like idiots,” exemplified the self-centered anger poisoning coronavirus discourse today. Earth to Ms. Rosenberg: You are not being picked on by the Biden administration. You are not being “insulted” by anyone. You are not alone in having faced wrenching decisions during the pandemic. If you are outraged, be outraged by the coronavirus. It has strained all of us, including public health experts. Be outraged by those who trumpet false facts to everyone, including parents. They force public health experts to make decisions for the greatest number of people while trying to counteract a torrent of misinformation.
Many people demand public health decisions that speak to their individual biases and proclivities, while too few make individual decisions focused on protecting others. Consider the angry, self-centered whining about wearing a mask without regard for how wearing a mask might keep others safe. What is a public health expert to do? Rely on science and experience and seek to protect the greatest number of people, knowing that what is decided will make someone unhappy. It’s not personal.