Bob Franken

Coronavirus and opening day

Anybody who is acquainted with me knows that I’m a baseball fan and root for my hometown team, the Nationals. Did I mention they won the World Series? It’s a new season, and opening day is coming up. This year, there’s a possibility that opening day might not happen, because we are dealing with the uncertainty of a possible pandemic caused by the new coronavirus, which is also known as Covid-19. That’s because it was identified as a new disease at the very end of 2019.

Since then, the illness has swept from China to much of the world. Obviously we’d survive the cancellation of a ballgame, and that worst-case scenario is a real possibility. Already, soccer games have been played before empty stands in countries that are already dealing with this apparently highly contagious bug, too new to have a protocol in place for how to avoid or treat it.

It has begun spreading to the United States, even though we’re separated from the dangerous areas by two oceans. The U.S. cases have been relatively few in number, but now we’re seeing them pop up spontaneously — that is to say, with no explanation, like no apparent exposure to someone overseas.

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