Frequently Asked Questions About My State's Reopening Plans

Q: My state has reopened for business. Does that mean the pandemic is over?

Are you serious? That's like asking, "The temperature dipped below 70 degrees in June. Is the summer over?" or "The garbage collectors forgot to pick up my garbage yesterday. Has civilization collapsed?"

No, the pandemic is not over. It won't be over until the virus stops spreading.

Also, it was Memorial Day. They don't collect garbage on Memorial Day.

Q: Now that the pandemic is over, can I go to restaurants and bars?

Seriously? Didn't you just read what I said? THE PANDEMIC IS NOT OVER!

Q: Yeah, whatever, Poindexter. Can I still go to restaurants and bars?

*sigh* Technically, you can. If a restaurant is open to dine-in customers, and they're practicing social distancing, like placing tables six feet apart, you can go. Some states are allowing up to 50% occupancy in restaurants. If your favorite restaurant is open for dining, then you're free to eat there. However, I'm sticking to carry-out and eating at home for the foreseeable future.

At this point, there aren't too many states where bars have opened, other than states like Wisconsin which just tattooed "Live free and die" on their forehead.

Q: I saw a guy who had invented a face mask that opened and closed like a mouth, so you could eat and still wear a mask. Should I get that?

I saw that too, and it just looks creepy. Like a demented duck robot that eats human souls like bonbons. Seriously, it looks like a Chuck-E-Cheese animatronic that kills people for sport.

Also, why do we wear masks now? That's right, to keep your contagious spittle droplets from becoming airborne.

What does this mask do? That's right, opens up right in front of your mouth so your contagious spittle droplets can become airborne. It's about as effective as pulling your mask down so your nose is uncovered, or cutting a hole in your mask so you can smoke.

Q: I don't want to wear a mask in public because they make me look weak.

That's understandable. I mean, you don't want to look weak and infirm in front of your family. Hey, you know who else looks weak and infirm in front of their families? People on ventilators because their lungs were ravaged by the virus. If you don't want to wear one to protect yourself, wear it so you don't make other people sick. Think of it as saving other people's lives.

Remember, heroes wear masks.

Q: This is about my personal freedom. The government can't tell me what to do or wear!

They tell you what to do all the time. You have to wear pants in public, don't you?

Regardless, we have certain societal obligations that we should follow, even in a free society. For example, we have an obligation not to harm people or make them sick. Even if we want to exercise our freedom, we can't if exercising our freedom hurts someone else.

As legal philosopher Zechariah Chaffee once said, "Your right to swing your arms ends just where the other man’s nose begins."

Q: You just Googled that, didn't you?

No! So what if I did? Shut up.

Q: But I have a medical condition that precludes me from wearing a mask. And HIPPA laws say I don't have to tell you what that is.

First of all, it's HIPAA, not HIPPA. It's not a female HIPPO.

Second of all, unless you're a HIPAA expert, I don't believe you actually know what the law says or does. You just called it HIPPA, so I question your knowledge on the matter.

Q: I just don't believe I should be required to wear one when I go into a store.

That's not the government, that's the store telling you. And since they're a private business, they can tell you whatever they want. You don't have to shop there, but you can't go in there unless you follow their rules.

If you visit a friend and they ask you to take your shoes off, you would, right?

Q: Of course, it's their house. They make the rules, and I follow them.

And this is similar to stores because. . . .?

Q: Fine, whatever. You're still a Poindexter.

Thank you.

Q: What is hydroxychloroquine? Should I be taking that to prevent COVID-19?

Despite what certain elected officials want you to think, hydroxychloroquine is a drug used for rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, it's not a COVID-19 preventative. So, unless you have rheumatoid arthritis or are a werewolf, you shouldn't take hydroxychloroquine.

Q: Wait, what? Werewolves don't have lupus, they have lycanthropy.

Oh, now who's the Poindexter? And I suppose now I shouldn't use silver bullets to protect myself against people with lupus.

Q: Of course no— What? You should nev— Are you serious? You haven't shot anyone, have you?

What? No! No, of course not. How could you even ask that?

Q: Seriously, look at me. Look at me! Oh my God, what did you do?

Nothing! I didn't shoot anyone.

Q: Good.

Also, I didn't do anything with wooden stakes.

Q: Come on, man! What the hell is wrong with you?

I have a medical condition!

Photo credit: Cottonbro (Pexels, Creative Commons 0)

My new humor novel, Mackinac Island Nation, is finished and available on Amazon. You can get the Kindle version here or the paperback version here.