Believe it or not, this is a discussion concerning the Coronavirus "pandemic" that we are facing right now in the world. It's a roundabout way to get there, but I do. There is a point to this - stick with me.
The coronavirus is not the only pandemic in play right now. "Pandemic" means prevalent, widespread, pervasive, rampant, epidemic - over a country or the world. I would suggest that COVID-19, as bad as it is, is not as serious as other "pandemics" happening right now.
We Americans are so spoiled. We are weaklings and sissies in many respects. We have failed to take care of ourselves. We have reneged on the most basic function of life, which is to care for ourselves, to take care of our lives, and to care for others around us.
This thought is right there in one of the most profound human documents of all time - the Declaration of Independence.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of happiness.”
Here is Truth - God created us with a Right to Life, and Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness!
Many of us don't really know what this means.
We have become less independent. We have become more dependent - on drugs, on the "system," on government, on someone or anyone but ourselves. With freedom, we have the right to let ourselves go, to do what we want. We even have the right to be negligent and even stupid, which is becoming more obvious in our world today. But with rights come responsibilities as well, or those rights can be compromised or lost.
I have heard and believed for decades that we Americans have run too quickly to get some "antibiotics" for any little thing that comes up in our health. This over-dependence on drugs to fight germs has weakened our own systems that were made to fight germs. But this is partially dependent upon our bodies being well and strong enough to put up a good fight. When we encounter germs and bacteria and viruses, our bodies were designed by God to put up a fight, to attack these foreign invaders, and to develop antibodies and immunity. It's part of what makes us stronger, both individually and as a group, over the course of history.
In my life as an adult, and especially when I became a parent responsible for my kids' lives, I came to believe that we should limit our usage of antibiotics. Instead, we should allow the normal sicknesses to run their course, giving our bodies time to heal and adapt, while growing stronger. It relates to the old saying, that "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger." There is some truth to that. There are times when you need medical attention, but there are times when we need to allow the "natural" process to happen, even though there can be some time and pain involved.
In my youth, we grew up out playing in the dirt! I grew up in a small town, on a farm and outside playing and working. We didn't go to the town doctor unless we really needed to do so. Haven't you heard that kids who grow up with pets in their homes have fewer allergies as they age?
Many kids are now allergic to peanut butter. What's with that? We used to live on peanut butter, and no one had an allergy to it. Now, people have been known to be allergic to pillows, dust, and all sorts of common, everyday materials, like scents, sunlight, money, and even water! (1)
The top ten allergies are eggs, milk, peanuts, soy products, wheat, tree nuts, shellfish, fish, raw fruits and vegetables, and sesame seeds. (2) I would contend that allergies may not be so much to these substances themselves, but rather to the chemicals and poisons that have been associated with raising, processing, and delivering them. It would sure be interesting to know the time frame during which these allergies have developed, and the corresponding increase of the use of chemicals and poisons in the environment.
I deeply believe that the incidence of allergies is at least partly due to how germ-free we have made our living environments. Our bodies were made to battle germs and bacteria and foreign substances. It is in our very make-up. But if there are not enough "enemies" to battle, then the body's defenses must almost create enemies to battle. Then I believe you have auto-immune problems develop - the body starts fighting itself or stuff that doesn't really need to be fought. Like peanut butter, or other items nearby. At its worst, some people are allergic to almost everything, and are truly miserable.
During the same time that we have come to depend on antibiotics during the past two generations, we as a people have been weakening our own systems through the "food" that we eat. It's a double whammy! Let's face it - we eat junk!
Back in the 1940s and 50s, "fast food" joints were just getting started, and it was an occasional treat. People still had gardens and prepared and ate real food, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and meats. Far less of our diet was processed. So many of the nutrients are now removed that they have to put some good stuff back in, "fortified" with vitamins and minerals. God already "fortified" real food with just what we need, as long as we eat it without destroying it first! Why do they call such a small section of the grocery stores "Health Food"?
Study the development of "processed" foods ("fast food" and "junk food") and track it with the history of health and disease in the U.S. You will discover that as we ate less healthy, our health correspondingly declined. The "diseases" that are the worst killers today are not the Coronavirus or Ebola - those are just the "sexy" scary ones that get the top billing and most attention.
These are the top killer diseases of the U.S. population currently (from 2017, the CDC):
Heart disease: 647,457
Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 160,201
Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 146,383
Influenza and pneumonia: 55,672
Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 50,633
How many of these known causes of death relate to what we eat and how we take care of ourselves? NEARLY ALL OF THEM! Think - obesity, clogged arteries, lack of exercise, broken down hearts, lungs, livers, and kidneys.
Actually, the third leading cause of death in the U.S. each year is Medical Mistakes. (4) These number as high as 250,000 each year! Of course, this is not noted among the "diseases" that take lives in the U.S. each year. It's not a disease. And drug overdose deaths, another 60,000-70,000 each year, as well as the misuse of prescription drugs. Many worry excessively about gun deaths, which number far fewer but are much more highly publicized. (We won't even talk about the holocaust of abortion - over 600,000 every year in the U.S. - more than 60 million since 1973.)
Now, back to COVID-19.
What does all of this discussion have to do with the Coronavirus epidemic? A lot, I contend.
When this whole Coronavirus issue came to the fore way back in February and March (2020), the major response of fear by our medical and governmental officials and experts was that there would be a rapid increase of infection that would overwhelm our hospitals and medical system. But there is always sickness and death - they know that. But experts wanted to prevent overstraining the system. Or so they said. Indeed there has been an enormous number of deaths in certain densely populated areas, most notably New York City and environs. For the most part, hospitals were not overwhelmed. In fact, now it is known that some truly sick people did not go to hospitals when they needed to, but rather died at home rather than risk catching COVID-19, ironically, that they might have died from. Fear kept them away.
COVID-19 is truly another deadly disease caused by a virus. It has been reported that more than 90% of COVID-19 victims have other chronic health issues! What if our bodies and systems were better prepared to combat this "enemy"? What if our immune systems were not so weakened and damaged by what we eat and how we live? What if our hospitals were not so jam-packed with people who are weak and sick of their own doing?
As I laid out above - we eat too much, we eat garbage and trash and junk, we smoke, we drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and we do much harm to ourselves.
Sorry, but not sorry. We have done much of this to ourselves, and we keep doing it and allowing it to happen. I wonder what we can do about it...
Quite surprisingly, Bill Maher is actually making some sense about COVID-19 that is right in line with this article. In a recent short video that follows, he makes some astute observations. Whenever I queue up a video of Mr. Maher, I cautiously wait for the F-words that usually come, and I listen to them first before sharing them with people easily offended by his typically filthy language and coarse thoughts. This video is free of such offensive language, and Bill seems to be able to speak without his gutter/locker room talk sometimes. Even the comments on the page of the YouTube video has numerous references to Bill "making sense" and getting it right on this one. Perhaps he has seen some light...
He says that people have come to believe that "...the way to win the war with microbes is to avoid them completely...you can't."
"The key to beating COVID...is your immune system."
"...microbes are ubiquitous...we can't sanitize the universe."
"Governors should declare keeping our bodies in good health an essential job, because that's the only way we're going to win this."
Paul Hayden is a Christian believer, and an American patriot, necessarily in that order. He is a student of the Bible, and is avidly interested in our role in the context of history, as understood through the heart and eyes of faith. Paul has lived and traveled somewhat widely, and now lives in the heartland of the U.S. (central Illinois), with his wife Donna - they have five grown children. Since December of 2016, he serves as the Editor-in-Chief of www.ConservativeTruth.org.
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