One consistent message: flexibility

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Of all the reasons to hurl humbugs and toss lumps of coal at government agencies, acting cautiously on behalf of public safety is not one of them.

The point may seem as obvious as the red nose on a reindeer’s face but some winter time trolls out there could use the reminder, even if it does dampen their otherwise festive spirit.

For the second year in a row the Chula Vista Starlight Parade was cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

While disappointed, most people last year understood the precaution given that vaccines still were not available and significant numbers of people were still contracting the virus and landing in the hospital or a coffin.

This year, however, with vaccines (and boosters) available, the rescindment of color-coded safety guidelines, the go-ahead for bars, restaurants and other businesses to return to full service, and a general understanding that outdoor activities are safer than indoor activities there are undoubtedly more people this year wondering “What gives? Why is this year’s parade cancelled if we have been allowed to participate in all these other activities?”

They are not unreasonable questions. As we have progressed through our second year of living in a pandemic, authorities have at times delivered mixed messages.

It’s safe. But not that safe. You don’t have to wear masks. You should wear masks, but under these conditions. It is safe to gather with family and friends. It is safe to gather with family and friends particularly under these specific conditions. Avoid large crowds.. But only large crowds that are in poorly ventilated areas..

The advisories have changed as the circumstances and science have dictated. When earlier this year thoughts of a holiday parade were considered that was when it seemed to many there was a firm handle on the virus.

Then the much more transmissible Delta variant came along. And now we have an even more potentially transmissible variant in Omicron. The parade was cancelled somewhere in between. But in its place the city of Chula Vista is planning a different holiday event. Outdoors. While it’s another mixed message maybe the one we should take away is: Be flexible. There is always next year for a return to normal. Hopefully.

One consistent message: flexibility