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Letter: Think of the coronavirus like World War II

Restrictions on automobiles, gasoline and rubber tires to conserve materials for the waging of war had college kids finding alternative ways of getting around. Wellesley College freshmen are pictured two-wheeling their way over the campus at Wellesley, Mass., March 20, 1942.
Associated Press

One responsibility of government is to protect its citizens; that is why we have certain laws that keep us from harming or killing each other. Rules governing driving vehicles are one example. Fewer lives are lost when we follow such rules, including observing speed limits, not texting or drinking while driving, and wearing seat belts, among others. We have come to accept such limits on personal freedom as necessary evils in a safe society. I think most of us cherish life under such circumstances.

Right now, the coronavirus is our enemy; we are at war with COVID-19. As in previous wars, the government has a right to impose rules limiting certain freedoms. (Think of restrictions during WWII on gas, food ... even nylon stockings.)

Once the threat to life posed by this pandemic is over, the wearing of a face mask will no longer be required — just as the “lost freedoms” during WWII were returned to us once the war was over. For those who hold a different point of view (such as not wearing masks), they can express their reasoning for that position under these war-like circumstances. Calm dialogue is more productive than shouting at each other.

Sandra Noakes

American Fork