Keeping the Lion Away

Yesterday, I noticed that Dolly Parton tweeted her sadness over the death of her friend, Charley Pride, who died of Covid 19 at the age of 86. A snarky stranger quickly responded saying, "If he really was a close friend, you'd know how to spell his name. And, he died 'with Covid,' not 'of Covid.'"

First off, it is "Charley" just as Dolly spelled it. But what really troubled me was the implication that people like Charley Pride die of all sorts of things and Covid 19 just happens to be standing around like an innocent bystander.  

Imagine a huge dazzle of zebras running wild and free on the plains of the Serengeti. All kinds of zebras - the young and strong that can run all day, the nearly newborn, still wobbly and vulnerable. The old zebras who wheeze and stumble as they strain to keep up. The partially lame, the blind in one eye, the sick and infirm. Don't forget the foolish, strong-headed zebras that wander off and stumble into precarious circumstances. 

All kinds of zebras roaming free. Free, but not always safe. You don't have to watch too many National Geographic videos to know that like most animals, zebras are prey, somebody's supper. Ask the zebras for a cause of death and what will they say? "It was the effing lions!" But you may say, "Well, they actually died 'with lions,' not 'of lions.' Those zebras had other health issues. They would have died eventually anyway."

I'm guessing the zebras would find small comfort in our ridiculous distinction. The one gnawing on your bones is the responsible party. 

Covid 19 is a predator, a killer that cuts down the most vulnerable and occasionally brings down a prime specimen or two. So maybe instead of trying to come up with rationales for taking this virus less seriously, we should keep the most vulnerable as safe as possible, surrounding them with our love and care, all of us doing our part to keep the lion away.    


Anonymous said…
Well said!

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