Editor, The Messenger,

To my friends and neighbors, please join me and raise your voice. I am sharing this letter I just sent to the Mayor and City Council. At stake are our health our lives, our jobs, our vibrant local business community and in fact the entire future of our special town.

Mr. Mayor and City Council members. You are our leaders, and so with positive virus numbers spiking in Athens, I’m starting with you. Sometimes it just takes one event to send it over the top and say, “that’s enough begging folks to comply with CDC rules.” The closing of Casa did it for me despite them trying so hard to stay safe, provide great food and keep their employees safe.

This next month is a test as to whether Athens can control the virus at a time when the university is closed, and we seem to be failing. It does not look good for the fall if we cannot. We need Athens to start enforcing social distancing and the wearing of masks. We need laws with teeth. I do not blame students only, but packed bars say much in addition to local employees testing positive. One just has to stand in front of a box store for several minutes to observe the lack of social distancing and mask wearing. I just returned from Krogers for my twice monthly shopping with few shoppers and employee precautions at 7 a.m. Even with their precautions, I am stressed. It does have consequences, even hidden ones. My blood pressure, always way low is now having to be monitored. Big surprise!

I don’t know what else to do to protect myself and all the workers uptown and all the people I love in Athens except to start yelling from the rooftops. We are obviously on our own. It is way past time to protect our community. Time for us to make our voices heard and protect our wonderful town now.

Carole Weiner,

My Athens home since 1967

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