A hard lesson to learn.

Courtesy of People Magazine

When Tony Green decided to host a small family gathering in June, he was doing it partly out of frustration with the COVID-19 restrictions. In his home state of Texas, he didn’t know anyone who had gotten sick in those early months of the pandemic, when most cases centered around the East Coast, and he “thought it was an overblown media hoax,” Green, 43, wrote in an op-ed for The Washington Post.

So Green and his partner invited four people over to their home — his parents and his partner’s parents — to stay for the weekend and enjoy meals, movies and time by a lake together after months apart.

But within days, all six of them tested positive for COVID-19, along with eight more people in their extended families.

Green developed severe symptoms, requiring a three-day hospital stay after the virus attacked his nervous system, but he eventually recovered. His father-in-law and his father-in-law’s mother were not as lucky, though, and both died from COVID-19.

In an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Green said he feels a sense of guilt for hosting the get-together, even though no one knows who was the first to get COVID-19.

“The feeling that I have is kind of like what, I would say, a drunk driver would have if they killed their family,” he said. “It was unintentional. This was my home. This is where it happened. So, you know there is a sense of responsibility.”

It is a shame that there are adults in the world who cannot follow facts to their logical conclusions and are always learning everything the hard way. 

And it is especially troubling right now when the information they need to protect themselves, and their families is readily available but is being downplayed by the leader of the country. 

I feel sorry for this man, but perhaps by sharing his story we can help others not make the same ignorant mistakes.