This week, the state of Alabama eased up on some of the restrictions for COVID-19. Just because these restrictions were reduced, doesn’t mean we have to run everywhere in town 10 times a day.

I am glad many of our small businesses can open, but most of our small businesses are still offering curb side pick-up, online shopping, drive-through and carry out services and many ways to keep you and them healthy. Please take advantage of those options. This keeps you and them safe and allows you to spend your money locally. This coming weekend is Mother’s Day, and many of our local retailers have already begun advertising special gifts for mom. This is not only a great time to support local, but it’s a great time to get mom a little something to boost her spirits during this time.

At this point with COVID-19, we are going to have to learn how to live smart with this virus until we get a vaccine. Just because states are opening and restrictions are being lifted, doesn’t mean our lives go back to normal. This just gives us the opportunity to do things we need to do but it is up to you to do them in a manner to keep yourself healthy and everyone around you healthy.

It’s crazy to think where we are with COVID-19 worldwide that there are still so many people in our community that say it’s not real or it’s made up by the media or it was a political attack. I’ll never understand how people at this point can still think that. Many are hanging out with large groups of people every weekend and then return to their jobs on Monday to infect hundreds of their coworkers and friends. And I know it’s happening because they post it all over Facebook. It’s just not kind to do that to our community, our friends and our neighbors. We must stop thinking this virus is just in big cities or in other countries. It is right here in DeKalb County, and it is making people deadly sick and has already taken the lives of several people right here in our area. And unfortunately, there will be more. But, if we can all do our part in stopping the spread, we can save lives right here in our own community.

— Tricia Dunne is publisher of the Times-Journal. Her column appears in the paper’s weekend edition. Email: tclinton@times-journal.com.

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