We are struggling to know what else to say.

COVID-19 is serious and it is surging. 

COVID-19 is not Democrat. 

It is not Republican. 

This novel coronavirus is an equal opportunity infector and an equal opportunity killer. 

That’s right.

It kills.

And it is surging in the state of Georgia.

Some of you have been online calling it the non-lethal virus. That is simply not true. 

Nationwide more than 120,000 people have died in just a few months. Worldwide almost half a million people have lost their lives. In Georgia, more than 2,600 people have died. 

If the rising number of cases here and across the country was just about more testing, then more people would not be hospitalized and dying. 

Hospitalizations are surging across the nation. 

When Gov. Brian Kemp lifted shelter-in-place orders, most people acted like the virus had somehow magically washed away. 

Nothing could be more removed from the truth. 

Our restaurants are crowded. 

Our stores are crowded. 

People are sitting next to each other in church, shaking hands and hugging. 

Residents are flocking to the beach and then returning here to potentially infect their friends, family and others. 

Most people are not wearing masks in public. 

The most confusing thing of all is people are acting like this is some kind of political ploy.

Some are making fun of mask wearers.

Leon County, Fla., like many counties and cities across the nation, now requires protective masks or face coverings to be worn in public. 

There are those who are talking about this being a personal liberty issue and not about public safety. That is such an odd way of thinking. 

Laws regulate seat belt usage, restrict us from drinking and driving and texting while driving. Few people complain about their personal liberty when it comes to those things because they understand that people who drink and drive or text and drive are putting others at risk. 

People not wearing masks are putting the people around them at risk. 

Leon County commissioners were able to take emergency action to protect the public there because the state of Florida allows local leaders to pass more restrictive laws, and the county did so because of rising COVID-19 cases.

State and local leaders don’t want to say so, but that is exactly what is going on here. 

More people are being infected, more people are getting sick and more people are dying. 

Restaurants that opened are now having to quickly close again, and one of our most popular restauranteurs has been extremely sick fighting COVID-19. 

How many more infections and how many more deaths will it take for you to take this seriously?

Will it take someone you work with, go to church with or a member of your own family getting sick for you to realize COVID-19 is real, dangerous and even deadly? 

So we will try one more time. 

Avoid gatherings. 

Practice social distancing of six feet or more. 

Wash your hands frequently. 

Use hand sanitizer. 

Wear a mask.

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