Yeah. I’ll be holding my breath. 

Four years after we first heard about COVID-19, more revelations are coming. Rutgers molecular biologist Richard Ebright “was quoted in a new Wall Street Journal article that the virus that killed millions” was very likely man-made in the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the New York Post reports. He cited a 2018 document found in the lab discussing making such a virus. You don’t say?! 

For some of us who obviously err on the more jaded and cynical side of life, this was a no-brainer. There were times over the past four years that I felt like Columbo rehashing a case in my trench coat. With a flick of my cigar, I solved the case: Wuhan Lab + Communist government + deadly virus + U.S. election year = Plandemic. 

But there were a lot of well-meaning people (the utopian optimists) who thought I was gullible. More than once I – along with my suspicious conservative cohorts – was verbally flogged on social media as a “conspiracy theorist.” I was obviously someone who thought the worst of the very kind, human-rights-protective Chinese Communist government and that saintly, old, country doctor, Anthony Fauci. 

Were my friends and I the only ones who noticed that Fauci kept changing his mind about all the COVID restrictions? Masks aren’t needed. No, wait – wear masks. In fact, wear TWO. I actually saw some folks wearing two masks at the same time. Bless it. 

Then there was the social media mask-shaming. According to some, if you didn’t wear a mask, you didn’t love your neighbor. Yep, pile on the Christian guilt! We all need more of that. No one considered that wearing a mask for individuals with special needs might be difficult, that masks trigger some trauma victims, or that healthy people generally don’t need masks. It was just “wear a mask or you hate your neighbor.” 

Speaking of my neighbor, Walmart was open, yet churches were closed. There’s plenty wrong with that sentence. We could follow arrows in grocery stores and supercenters, but could not go worship the God who many of us believe has the whole world in His hands. A global health crisis certainly qualifies as a detrimental time to worship and seek the Lord. Seriously, if we were healthy enough to patronize grocery stores, surely we could sit in church pews to worship and pray. Still trying to follow the logic on that one! 

Back to that kindly, country doctor. Much like in “Christmas with the Kranks,” Fauci recommended skipping Christmas. And Thanksgiving. And any holiday that families can get collective joy from. And some people followed his advice. They isolated and face-timed family members instead of celebrating what were some grandparents’ last holiday season. 

I can understand if you had an immune-compromised family member. That is a different situation. No argument there. But I remember talking to my 87-year-old father about Thanksgiving and Christmas and his response was telling. “I’ve buried everyone I love except your family,” he said. “Why would I want to be alone now?” We cooked and celebrated together in 2020, 2021, and 2022 (and since). 

On Christmas night 2021, my husband and youngest son developed fevers. They tested COVID-positive, and I had to call my dad because he had been at our house. “I’ll call you if I start feeling bad,” he said. He wasn’t worried about getting sick. He was thankful not to be lonely well into the sunset of his life. 

On the “lonely” note – lockdowns. My mom passed away in 2017. She had Alzheimer’s and received excellent care in a memory care residence where I visited her every other day. I could not imagine what it would have been like to visit her through a window or from six feet away. She would not have understood – and think of how many of our elderly didn’t understand why they were not allowed to hug their loved ones. The lockdowns — whether implemented by the ridiculous Dr. Fauci (anyone remember how he completely isolated AIDS patients?), governors, state health officers (looking at you un-elected Scott Harris), or school superintendents – were especially cruel. They isolated the elderly, scared the gullible into staying home, and kept many children from academic progress. The lockdowns were nothing short of abusive. 

It's 2024, and the World Health Organization (WHO) is already discussing “Disease X,” — during another election year! I think I’ve seen this movie before. 

We need to look back on the failed policies of COVID-19 and resolve to think critically before the next global health crisis, opening our eyes to what is REASONABLE. Good old common sense flew out the window for some of us in 2020. Let’s think rationally about how to still LIVE our lives despite crazy instructions from the supposed “experts.” We’ve discovered some of those experts were self-designated. 

And whatever you do, get yourself a conspiracy theory pal. Someone who’ll knock on your door and tell you it’s time to get some fresh air. You know, the rebellious kind who won’t follow the arrows at the grocery store! Crazy, right? You’ll see them pulling out of their driveway Sunday for church while Scott Harris is telling everyone else – with their two masks on – to take cover. That’s a friend you need because if we’ve learned anything after four years we’ve learned this: Live not by lies, and don’t live in fear.

Kristin Landers is a substitute teacher and freelance writer. Landers’ previous work includes serving as Communications Director for the Alabama Policy Institute and working for Citizens Against a Legalized Lottery (CALL) to defeat legalized gambling in the state of Alabama.

The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to

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