Communion Of Dreams

“If we have a pandemic, pray hard.”

One of the ‘front page’ writers at Daily Kos is very much concerned about public health issues, and preparations for a pandemic or other public health emergency.  He’s also one of the people responsible for the Flu Wiki.  He had a good post up today at dKos about how this issue is playing out in the current presidential election.  In the discussion of that post, there was one comment in which the author said this:

Our Emergency Rooms are in Chaos Now …

…without a pandemic.

We are in no way prepared for anything out of the normal. Republican misrule has mazimized corporate profits in medicine while minimizing social welfare benefits. Unprofitable activities like emergency preparedness have gone wanting.

If we have a pandemic, pray hard.

I am not a person of faith.  I don’t write about that much here, though if you follow any of my links over to UTI, you’ll certainly see what I have to say about religion there.  So the thought of praying for help in a pandemic would never occur to me – I would much rather do something practical to prepare for such an emergency, like getting our hospitals ready.

And I don’t think that the author of that comment is saying that we should only rely on prayer – just expressing some exasperation with the current situation, the current mindset about what role hospitals play in our society.  Daily Kos is, after all, a blog devoted to electing progressive democrats and pushing liberal values like a good universal health system.

Anyway, first consider how prepared you are for a possible pandemic, earthquake, whatever.  Personally.  You have to take responsibility for yourself and your family.  As I have written before, there are a lot of good resources with excellent information on what steps you can take to insure your own survival in an emergency.  And then investigate what steps you can take to help your local government, your community, to better prepare.  It is a very complex problem, and they will likely welcome your help.  This will be a step I will likely be looking into in the future, now that our care-giving responsibilities are done and I am recovering.

If prayer is important to you, then by all means, pray.  But that shouldn’t stop you from doing what you can to also prepare in more tangible ways.

Jim Downey


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