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The Weekly News Source for Wyoming's Ranchers, Farmers and AgriBusiness Community

The Concern is Dropping

by Wyoming Livestock Roundup

Since the middle of March, the Wyoming Survey and Analysis Center at the University of Wyoming has been conducting surveys of around 500 people about their concerns and health practices during the challenging time of the coronavirus. Some of the findings you might agree with, and some will disturb you. 

            We have all felt the affects of the coronavirus. Over one-third of the people in Wyoming have either been laid off or have a family member who has lost their job. In addition, over half the people in Wyoming say they, or someone from their immediate family, have had their work hours or pay cut. 

            In some areas of the state where the virus has hit hard, many people know of someone who has died of the virus.

            For a lot of us, we’re tired of hearing about the virus, tired of reading about it and tired of dealing with it. However, we also need to face the fact that the virus is present, and we should deal with it. This is especially true if we live in an urban area, not only for ourselves, but also for our families and others.

            As we have managed the virus with some success, the governor and our health officials have reduced restrictions. It seemed within a span of three days, a large number of people stopped wearing masks in public places and being aware of social distancing. For those living in the country, life went on as usual, as the threat of the virus is much lower.

            In the latest survey, 46 percent of those polled said the virus was blown out of proportion. If polled, I would be one of those 46 percent. My reasoning is with a presidential election coming up in November, those in politics have made the virus a political issue. 

            If President Trump makes a statement on the virus, the other side attacks him and vice versa. A lot of politicians turned into medical experts, and the medical experts turned into politicians. It has gotten completely out of hand, and we don’t know what to believe. 

            I would say Wyomingites do overwhelmingly approve of the way President Trump is handling the issue.

The survey reflects the misleading press and politicizing of medical issues. While a number of people claim the virus isn’t a major issue, one-quarter of those surveyed say the worst is yet to come, and one-quarter say they don’t know. 

A number of states, including Wyoming, are reacting to a second wave of the virus. Is the second wave real or are more people being tested? Most likely, the answer is both. 

Gov. Gordon’s approval rating has remained high since the beginning of the virus. This high rating reflects good leadership and strong relationships with the people.

As expected, a big majority of those surveyed said they remained very concerned about the impacts of the virus on the economy and their personal finances. This is not unexpected, given the low energy and livestock prices. 

The virus is still around, but the restrictions have loosened. Gatherings, both outdoors and indoors, can allow more people. This means we still have to be aware of the virus and respect how others deal with it. But those decisions are ours, and each of us will be making decisions for ourselves and families. Just remember, we have seen jump in cases the last week or so. If we get too careless, the virus will nail us.

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