If you've been wondering and worried whether America's best days are behind her, the valor on display right now ought to help assuage your fears.
The nurses, doctors, firefighter-EMTs, clinicians, nurses' aides, police officers, researchers and others who are fighting an unseen enemy remind us every day of who we really are.
The people fighting for our recovery remind us Americans have always been people of immense courage.
It shouldn't have taken a pandemic to see medical professionals for who they always have been: The best this nation has to offer.
It shouldn't have taken a disaster of biblical proportions to appreciate retail workers, delivery drivers, farmworkers and so many others who don't have the luxury of working from home.
Without them, trying to navigate and survive this pandemic would be unimaginable.
It shouldn't take their martyrdom to make them visible.
A former administrator with FEMA described our current state as the equivalent of being hit by 50 Katrinas. He's not wrong, but even a disaster and tragedy of this scale won't result in our demise. We will survive this because of the Americans who daily swallow their own fears and remain faithful to their calling.
They stay when it would be much easier to run. They stay, at risk to their own families; they stay, even when they run out of the weapons needed to fight this war.
They deserve better than garbage-bag gowns, no gloves and used face masks.
We will survive because they are some of the bravest people this nation has ever produced.
In the future, when people ask what it means to be American, we can point to 2020, and those men and women who risked their lives to save ours.
Last week, after the Wisconsin Supreme Court refused to permit a delay of that state's primary, something extraordinary happened: Thousands of Wisconsin voters, face masks and all, showed up and stood in line for hours to cast their ballots.
In doing so, they bounced out a Supreme Court incumbent who was endorsed by the president, and was expected to win in a walk.
Though the right, decent, honorable and just thing to do would have been to reschedule the election. To those so cynically certain that fear would all but kill the turnout: you didn't see that coming, did you?
Only people who believe that nothing less than democracy is at stake would have ventured to take such a risk to preserve it.
In Canton, Ohio, Beth Philley has taken it upon herself to operate the Free Little Grocery Store, where people can acquire canned goods on an honor system.
So, what would possess vandals to steal tables and other items on display? To what end?
Apart from being infuriating, it's just disappointing that people would engage in such destructive selfishness in the midst of a crisis that leaves no part of the community unscathed.
But if this crisis is teaching us anything, it is that people such as Philley far outnumber those who are trying to make matters worse.
– Reach Charita at 330-580-8313 or email@example.com. She writes for the Canton (Ohio) Repository.