To the Editor:
Stores have created elderly-only shopping hours, elderly in most cases defined as age 60 and over. It is further requested that only one family member enter the store during the shopping visit. I get up and go alone to the Stop and Shop every Saturday morning at 6 a.m.; I leave the store at about 7:45 a.m. At the opening, I notice maybe one or two other seniors shopping; at 7:45 I notice about maybe another two or three who show up. In theory, the purpose of elderly shopping hours is to protect both the young and elderly. It is believed that seniors are more prone to the coronavirus, and they, too, can be spreaders to others.
So please, and with all due respect to seniors, it is not just the younger schoolchildren and others who are presenting risk and endangering. It is not just the young who have their parts to play in controlling the virus. And I suggest for some seniors, at least, it would perhaps be a bit more respectful of the elderly doing their part if they could safely manage to get themselves out of bed in the morning to allow for a single household member to do their shopping during the designated elderly shopping hours. You see, we can all do our parts to perhaps ease the crisis, relieve the strains on first responders and medical personnel, and perhaps create a safer community.
oOn another virus-related issue, this one involving Hull’s school athletes, you cannot understate the importance of high school sports and extracurricular activities. I believe we as a town need to find a way to safely resume activities as quickly as we can. I fully understand that, between the coronavirus pandemic and the lack of sports and extracurricular activities today, only one of them is a life-and-death situation. But I believe that those adults involved in high school supervision can find a safe way to follow guidelines, to mitigate risk, and to demonstrate proper behavior for the kids, no matter how restrictive or inconvenient.
Whatever our small town has to do to get kids safely back on the field, the ice, the court, or in extracurricular activities, we need to be open to it. Whatever steps need to be taken to ensure safety we should take them. We need our school leadership to take the lead and our students and staff to roll with the punches. The kids deserve protection and some form of normalcy from both school leadership and our community’s adults.
Whatever protocol is developed, it must prioritize safety and not care about winning and losing, about competing for a state championship but rather about normalcy. I believe that school leadership can if it wants, and should, find the needed and safe approach.
Kenneth L. Kaplan