Vol. 13, No. 13 – Mar 25 – Apr 7, 2020 – Opinion/Editorial

Cancel, cancel, cancel. Stay at home. Don’t hug when we need them most. What awful tough times for us all.

∙This is a very different issue of the Breeze than usual. Almost no events (including art) as Ventura shuts down. Several Coronavirus articles as well – not our usual Ventura news, but important for our readers.

If you are reading this, you were obviously able to find a copy of the Breeze. Many of the businesses that carry the Breeze are closed.

First, I want to thank and compliment the amazing Ventura Breeze staff for getting this issue out and still managing to get it into racks and businesses that are still open.

I hear so much about government taking care of hourly workers that need financial help, but it goes way beyond hourly workers. There are so many small businesses that were just managing to stay open as it is, especially mom and pop restaurants, that will probably never open again. And they employ people.

Even the Ventura Breeze is struggling. This issue has a very small amount of ads. Many of our advertisers are holding off right now until they can evaluate what the future holds for their businesses, or they are closed right now. If they are open, and you can afford to do so, please continue to buy from them.

Many newspapers, large and small, are struggling and suspending their print editions. The economic forecast for local papers was not very strong even before this pandemic so it has just been exacerbated by this. Even a London-based newspaper is shutting down its print edition.

Many small local papers have asked their readers for donations to keep printing (kind of like art patrons). So, let me ask you, our readers, would you be willing to contribute financially to the Ventura Breeze in order for us to keep printing? Let me know your thoughts and suggestions at publisher@venturabreeze.com.

During these stressful times we all need to take care of our mental health also. We all have feelings of depression and anxiety. Some finding working at home, and the feeling of isolation, very alarming. So, take some very deep breaths and try to relax. Maybe it’s time to take care of all the little jobs that need doing around the house. Marking off your “to do” list can be very satisfying.

∙ The LA Time’s coverage is 95% about Coronavirus. I wonder what happens to all of the other events making news that we know nothing about except, perhaps, online?

∙ While a national emergency like this brings out the best in people who are doing wonderful things for each other, it also brings out the very worse in some. The most terrible being scammers taking advantage of seniors. Even a leading TV televangelist recently promoted his “Silver Solution” suggesting the formula could boost the immune system and kill the virus withing 12 hours. Thankfully the government shut that down.

Phony products are being sold on Facebook and Craigslist. There is no pill, or supplement that can prevent or cure the virus.

∙The Ventura Unified School District closed all schools on Monday, March 16 through Friday, April 10 due to coronavirus concerns. There is the strong possibility that schools will not open again until after summer. So tough on families that need to go to work while their kids are in school.

∙My condolences, pain and thoughts go out to the family, friends and school mates of 16-year-old Austin Gambill who died from injuries he suffered after he was hit by a truck along Seaward Avenue last week. Gambill was a sophomore at Ventura High School where he was a member of the school’s cross-country team. The driver of the truck remained on the scene and cooperated with the police. Apparently, drugs and alcohol were not a factor in the crash just one of those awful things that can happen in life. I also feel for the truck driver who will live with that image for the rest of his life.

And Mother’s Day is not that far way. It will be a lonesome one for most people being isolated from each other.

Really odd to me we are told to keep social distancing and at the White House Coronavirus Task Force meeting speakers stand shoulder to shoulder.

∙Some desperate people have resorted to using other papers and cloth in the absence of toilet paper which is resulting in the stoppage of sewer lines. So, please don’t use the Ventura Breeze as toilet paper. Besides being too rough, we don’t want to be the cause of clogging up your sewer lines.

∙It is beyond my belief but there are still some Americans that believe that the virus is the Democrat’s way of getting rid of Trump. Italians ignored all the recommendations to prevent the virus spread and their death toll is more than the Chinese, over 4,000. We must do what we are being told to stop this awful virus from spreading. The number of deaths caused by the coronavirus worldwide has reached at least 13,000, including almost 400 in the U.S.

∙ Ralph Charette, 71, said he bought a rifle and ammunition on Saturday to protect himself and his family as a wave of coronavirus panic sweeps across the country. Charette, a military veteran, spent $1,500 at a gun shop in Germantown, Wisconsin, after encountering aggressive shoppers and empty shelves at local grocery stores. Now, if looters come knocking, he’ll be ready, he said.

As hysteria surrounding the illness drives some to stockpile groceries and toilet paper it’s also causing many to worry about a shortage of gun supplies, which is driving up demand and leading to long lines. I find this to be very disturbing. Especially in times like this when people are anxious and very up tight. Some are even suicidal. Some of these guns will be used for that purpose.

For instance, seven members of the same family were fatally shot recently in North Carolina. The suspect is among the dead. The incident is a suspected murder-suicide.

Take care of each other, and be kind.

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