EDITORIAL

This cartoon by Greg Perry appeared in the print edition of The Penticton Herald on Friday, July 22, 2020.

To all the partiers who ignored the advice of public health officials regarding mass gatherings — shame on you.

For the past several months, many of us stayed locked in our homes. Some of us were out of work, and for the first time in our lives, relying on subsidies from the government.

Some businesses went under, others will have a hard time recovering.

Old people weren’t allowed to be in the presence of loved ones. Some died alone.

Kids weren’t able to go to school. Grade 12 students didn’t get eo enjoy traditional graduations.

We couldn’t mourn collectively as a community as funerals were restricted to immediate family only.

The Interior Health region was a textbook case in how to follow social distancing. We had very few cases, next to no deaths. The rest of the world held B.C. in high esteem.

But, the nice weather came and with it the attitude, “Hell we’re only young once.”

The Okanagan party crowd wasn’t worried about themselves, nor about everyone else they may come in contact with, including children and the elderly.

COVID-19 cases are on the rise and it’s unfortunate, we could have all enjoyed the sun and company of friends if we all played by the rules and made some minor adjustments to our lifestyle.

That’s not too much to ask.

Did Okanagan residents just waste and sacrifice four months of their lives?

A scolding by Premier John Horgan on Thursday might not be enough. Maybe there needs to be more enforcement and punishment to those who don’t obey the rules.

Just when it seemed that COVID was about to become a distant memory, partiers have hit the reset button.

To those who attended mass gatherings without facemasks or any other social distancing — shame on you. We hope you enjoyed the weekend. We’re all paying the price.

Without using profanity, let’s call the partiers what they are.

Selfish.

James Miller is managing editor of The Penticton Herald. Email: james.miller@ok.bc.ca