The year of 2020 was filled with sorrow, chaos, loss, and plenty of grief. However, even through difficult times, it brought families closer than they ever could (or wanted to) imagine. Though quarantine brought stress and separation, it also improved the climate, reduced the need for travel, but most of all, showed the world how resilient humans can be when we come together to overcome tragedy. With a new year comes many questions and concerns, as well as hesitant hope. This week four Bella Vista students were interviewed to gather their thoughts on predictions for this next year, and how they spent the new year.
How did you spend new years? Were you and your family safe? “My family and I stayed home for New Years. We had planned to go to my uncle’s but we had gone out for Christmas so we decided to stay home” (Anna Wurschmidt, Sophomore).
“I was at my friends house the day but spent the actual New Years at my dads house. I was relatively safe” (Ethan Durling, Sophomore).
“On new years I stayed home with my dad and watched both of the National Treasure movies. I didn’t even go look at the fireworks because they make my ears hurt. I stayed with my dogs to make sure they didn’t freak out because they don’t like the fireworks either. We were safe and low key this year, and I wasn’t upset about that at all” (Katelynne Hall, Sophomore).
“I spent New Years at home, with just the people that live at home with me. I didn’t go out to see other people at all” (McKenna Worthington, Sophomore).
What are your predictions for this new year? Do you think things will get better or worse? “I think COVID is going to be here for the next several years. I’ve had several talks with my mom (an ICU nurse who also helps in the COVID unit), and she doesn’t think things will get any better for a while. I think that after we get enough vaccinations out, we might start heading the right direction, that is if people still continue to wear masks and practice social distancing” (Anna Wurschmidt, Sophomore).
“I think that the virus will die down this year. Maybe even schools will open back up in 2021. Things will probably get better, especially since there’s a vaccine out. In fact my dad got his covid shot. But who really knows what’s going to happen this year? Anything can happen and I guess we’re all going to have to find out” (Ethan Durling, Sophomore).
“I have hope that things will get much better over time. I don’t know how long it’ll be until things get back to how they were before, and I’m okay with not knowing. I think if we get a vaccine by the end of this year, we should ease into ‘normal life’ instead of trying to jump back in” (Katelynne Hall, Sophomore).
“I think right now, the governor is jumping the gun for taking us into the purple tier and out of the stay at home order. I understand the pressure to reopen but it is simply too dangerous. Those actions I expect to lead to more record highs of cases and deaths. But once the vaccine is out to the general public more, and is verified as safe for kids under 18, cases will start to go down and we will start to see the light at the end of the tunnel. However that shouldn’t happen until summer 2021 to the end of the year. Covid will most likely not fully be gone by the end of this year, but there will definitely be a lower amount of cases” (McKenna Worthington, Sophomore).
As you can gather, predictions about 2021 vary from student to student. There are many questions and possibilities for the new year. Establishments are slowly beginning to reopen once again, but one must wonder, with all the harrowing data and numbers in the news, is this really the best decision for the safety of the public?
Do you think we should be focusing on reopening stores/businesses during 2021, or should we should be more focused on the general health and safety of the public?
“I think we should try reopening stores and such because this is our new normal. It’s not fair that small businesses are being shut down but bars are still open. I think that the best thing we could do is to slowly start opening up stores, have them allow a certain amount of people in, and make it mandatory to wear a mask in that establishment” (Anna Wurschmidt, Sophomore).
“I think stores should be open, but made covid friendly. It’s unfair that only small businesses get shut down while big businesses like Walmart or Target get to stay open. Either everything gets shut down or nothing” (Ethan Durling, Sophomore).
“I definitely would love to have everyone be more focused on general health. I would love to say that I want schools and sports to come back as soon as possible but I know that it’s not the smartest idea to jump back into those things. To be honest, I couldn’t care less about ‘the economy’ but I do worry about families that rely on their small businesses” (Katelynne Hall, Sophomore).
“Definitely the general health and safety of the public. We can’t have the stores and businesses if the owners and the workers are sick or even dying” (McKenna Worthington, Sophomore).
These four students have lots of ideas regarding safety during 2021 and predictions for the year. Whether good or bad, change is sure to come with the new year and all one can do is hope for the best, stay safe, and stay healthy.