Before you read today’s article, please go to that cabinet where you keep your favourite headache remedy. (I realize that for some of you that may actually be the liquor cabinet, rather than the medicine cabinet, and to be honest, that COULD be more helpful.)
What if I told you that you didn’t have to worry about a zombie apocalypse, the aftermath of nuclear war, or nay, dare I say it the Novel Coronavirus…dun dun duuuuuun!!!
I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, Stormin, we’re almost six months into this thing in the United States. This pandemic, and so far the situation can probably only be described by the two words. The first being “cluster”, and the second being a word that I’m pretty sure, even if I filled in all but the first letter with ampersand (&), octothorpe (#) and the at (@) sign, there isn’t a snowball in hell’s chance the editor is going to let it slide (raspberry emoji). [Editor’s note: I would have included it, but his description is funnier.]
Anyway, here’s the thing. Your government actually has a comprehensive, no-nonsense plan that can be switched on with a simple declaration by the Secretary of Homeland Security.
The “National Response Framework is a guide to how the Nation responds to all types of disasters and emergencies. It is built on scalable, flexible, and adaptable concepts identified in the National Incident Management System to align key roles and responsibilities across the Nation. The NRF outlines the roles and responsibilities at the individual, organizational and other private sector as well as local, state, and federal government levels.” So it literally covers the problem at all levels.
I’m going to refrain from quoting any more of this document to you. The latest version from October 28, 2019 is available online to download for FREE, and it’s only 57 pages long. Look at page 21, where the “Emergency Support Functions” (ESFs) are listed. Specifically at “ESF #8 Public Health & Medical Services”. There might be a few others that would play into it, but that is obviously the main one.
So now you’re thinking, WOW, that headache is really starting to kick-in, and I’m really glad you told me up front to have some bourb…I mean aspirin ready. And what does all of that mean to me…well…you?
Here’s my take-away. If this pandemic was being handled through the National Response Framework, I believe there would have been people working at the local, state and national levels just trying to fix the problem from the beginning. No politicians making it fodder for their campaigns, no so-called experts clamoring for the spotlight, no arguments about wearing or not wearing masks, just people working hard to solve the nation’s problem. It’s time for our leadership to do their jobs and just help us get through this pandemic in the fastest, safest most orderly way possible. We all need our lives back and our economy back on track. If you want to play the blame game, just leave it for historians.
Kidding aside, the National Response Framework is a very serious piece of work that could one day save this country. If not though, it might come in handy for the coming zombie apocalypse. C’mon, you know it’s coming.
BTW, just in case you want a your own hard copy of that 57 page booklet, I’m not going to say there are some unscrupulous people out there, but I saw hard copies for sale online from two large online retailers, both of whose names start with letters that are in the first five of the alphabet. If you haven’t figured it out yet, both of their names start with vowels. C’mon guys, it can’t be that hard. There are only two vowels in the first five letters. Didn’t you watch Sesame Street when you were a kid, or last week after you finally wrapped up Ozark and couldn’t quite get yourself to start binging a new series? To be fair, these large online retailers don’t actually sell everything on their sites themselves, but one of them did personally get yelled at by Congress in July. Besides, I’m pretty sure if you find the right contact at FEMA, they’ll send you one for free, or whatever a pre-addressed, postage-paid envelope costs these day. Anyone remember those?