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Cooler heads must prevail

On Tuesday, Bridge (bridgemi.com) reported that a security officer in Flint was shot in the back of the head Friday. He later died from his injuries.

The story goes on to explain that Calvin Munerlyn was shot because he was doing his job.

In this latest case of COVID-19 panic, Munerlyn, who served as a security guard at a Family Dollar store in Flint, told a female customer of the store that she needed to wear a mask if she wished to continue shopping at the store. Ignoring him, the customer continued to shop, leading Munerlyn to tell a cashier at the store not to serve the customer.

Angry, the woman left the store, but returned later with her husband and son. While, presumably in discussion with the husband, the guard was shot in the back of the head by the son.

While this episode is extreme, it brings to light a larger issue with the way we as a country have handled the stay-at-home orders throughout this pandemic. Hint, we are not doing well.

Just three weeks in, a man was shot in San Jose, California, in an argument about wearing a mask. In Oakland County, a man was arrested after he wiped his nose on the shirt of a Dollar Tree employee who told him he must wear a mask. In Macomb County, prosecutors have charged a St. Clair Shores woman who assaulted a store employee who told her to wear a mask. That woman later spat at officers who responded to the scene she created.

While some of these incidents can be chalked up to “cabin fever,” that does not excuse how dangerous they are for the individuals involved.

While, fortunately, we have yet to see any of this type of violence here in the Copper Country, it is important to remember that actions such as these do not help what is already a stressful situation.

While it should go without saying, cooler heads must prevail.

Every life is precious. No one should lose their life to a virus as difficult to stop as coronavirus is proving to be. No one should lose their life over an argument over something as trivial as wearing a mask.

We in the Copper Country are a tough, resilient group of people. We showed that resiliency in the best way possible during the events of the Father’s Day flood.

Now is our opportunity to do the same when it comes to how we handle a worldwide pandemic.

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