Be safe and wise on Thanksgiving

Published 9:44 am Tuesday, November 24, 2020

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Health experts are worried about how Thanksgiving celebrations will impact the spread of COVID-19 across the country.

Essentially, little hotspots all over the country will be traveling outside of their normal territory to see family this week, meaning cases will spread across county and state lines. And unfortunately, our normal, traditional holiday gatherings could easily become super-spreader events.

We know that’s frustrating for people reading this. It’s frustrating for us too.

As difficult as it, the reason our society is working right now is because most of us are wearing masks and social distancing.

We can’t just let that go this upcoming week, or all the hard work we’ve done minding health regulations over the last eight months will all go for naught.

Following those health tips are important because it’s what allows our society to continue to function.

That includes schools staying open. Troup County Schools Superintendent Brian Shumate discussed that at last week’s school board meeting, noting that he’s having Thanksgiving in very small groups in order to prevent the spread of the virus. Shumate, like all of us, obviously wants to see a minimal change in school cases when returning from Thanksgiving break.

Unfortunately, if most people choose not to wear a mask and have a normal Thanksgiving get-together, it’s likely cases in our area will spike in the weeks ahead, and there will be consequences for everyone.

Nobody wants us to have another stay at home order to navigate through.

The good news is that there are ways to still see family this holiday.

You could celebrate in smaller groups, like Shumate suggested, or gather with family virtually through Zoom or another web-based platform.

If you do plan to have a gathering, try to do it outside. Have everyone bring their own utensils, food and drinks. This method prevents people touching the same items over and over, which can spread the virus.

Everyone wants to see their family, hug them around the neck and enjoy a normal Thanksgiving, us included. But, that’s just not possible right now.

Take precautions this Thanksgiving. Enjoy the day, eat some turkey and see family — just do it safely.

This is not a normal year, and unfortunately, we can’t treat it like one.