Commentary

Amazing heroes in the fight against coronavirus

BY: - April 7, 2020

One of my memories, one that had been tucked away back where the cobwebs congregate, is from that day in 2004 when the oldest Evans daughter graduated from Saint Louis University. The graduates crowded onto the arena floor for the commencement ceremony. They were grouped by their areas of study — business, education, arts and […]

How coronavirus threatens the seasonal farmworkers at the heart of the American food supply

BY: - April 6, 2020

Many Americans may find bare grocery store shelves the most worrying sign of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their food system. But, for the most part, shortages of shelf-stable items like pasta, canned beans and peanut butter are temporary because the U.S. continues to produce enough food to meet demand – even if […]

If Iowa is already practicing ‘shelter in place,’ why not call it that?

BY: - April 6, 2020

Gov. Kim Reynolds, as part of her argument against ordering Iowans to “shelter in place” to prevent the spread of COVID-19, suggests that her existing emergency orders have the same effect. “There is still some disconnect in terms of what we have done and what the expectations are, and actually what’s taking place in other […]

Information is as vital as face masks during COVID crisis

BY: - March 31, 2020

We have all become acutely aware in the past few weeks why masks and face shields, respirators and ventilators are so important for hospital workers and their patients. The supply is not keeping up with the need, and that could have dire consequences for the doctors, nurses and patients. Likewise, the coronavirus crisis has underscored […]

Don’t let the ‘new normal’ leave the public out of public business

BY: - March 30, 2020

The news that the State Capitol was closing to the public due to the coronavirus outbreak was just one in a stream of emails from government agencies over the past two weeks announcing they would be conducting the people’s business while temporarily ending the people’s access to public offices. Social distancing is important right now […]

Nurse, pregnant mom, caregiver, pilot’s wife still waiting for COVID test results

BY: - March 29, 2020

I’m a nurse, public health professional, soon-to-be nurse practitioner, wife of a pilot, caregiver to an elderly grandmother, pregnant mom of three, soon to be four, and best friend to a woman set to deliver her second baby any day. COVID-19 is all-consuming for me and I know I am not alone. On March 18, […]

Adaptive Ethics: Losing fear and living mindfully

BY: - March 27, 2020

The ancients knew something that we have forgotten in our daily digital skedaddle. Smartphones tell us where to be and what to do every minute, pinging us incessantly with pesky reminders about meetings, appointments, notifications and incomplete chores, assignments and deadlines. On top of this, we make lists. There are apps for that, too, under […]

Should Congress demand America’s youth give a year of service to their country?

BY: - March 25, 2020

What does it mean to serve the United States, and who should be required to do so? On March 25, 2020, after three years of investigation, the National Commission for Military, National, and Public Service is expected to make its final recommendations on the issue to Congress. Members of the nonpartisan commission hope that their […]

Scientists move to protect gorillas, Iowa’s bonobos from COVID-19

BY: - March 24, 2020

Ever since I visited Rwanda’s mountain gorillas in 2009 and started following a bonobo research center in Des Moines, I’ve cringed any time there is a coronvirus outbreak. And not just because it’s a health threat to people all over the globe. Great apes are susceptible to human respiratory illnesses, whether they are mountain gorillas […]

More COVID-19 testing should not change our behavior. But it probably would.

BY: - March 23, 2020

What would you do if you received a positive diagnosis of coronavirus? This is the essential question behind the public policy argument over who should be tested for COVID-19. There are loud and persistent voices in the news media, on social media and in elected office insisting that we can’t possibly respond appropriately to this […]

Grassley: Iowans should embrace ‘pioneer spirit’ during COVID-19 crisis

BY: - March 17, 2020

This week, I scheduled a dozen county meetings in keeping with my annual tour across the state to keep in touch with Iowans. Like many events, my meetings are postponed. The coronavirus outbreak is disrupting society and everyday life. From canceled sporting events to school closings, travel restrictions and nixed St. Patrick’s Day parades, Iowans […]

I have to avoid all viruses, not just COVID-19. Social distancing helps keep me safe.

BY: - March 17, 2020

When news of the COVID-19 contagion broke, I saw two distinct responses: zombie apocalypse-level panic and dismissal of the virus as a mild cold or flu. While the former is a bit unnerving, the latter was far more horrifying. You see, I’m one of those people with an underlying medical condition, who the CDC refers […]