All they had to do was listen to the scientist. He tried in vain to warn them of impending disaster. Lives were hanging in the balance, he said, but they would not have it. He was silenced, and their world was doomed.

This is the story of Jor-El, Superman’s biological father. Jor-El discovered that Krypton’s core had become unstable and radioactive, and he learned the planet would soon explode. Despite Jor-El’s irrefutable evidence, the arrogant science council refused to take action, and they silenced Jor-El to keep him from inciting the public.

I used to think Jor-El’s plight was an exaggeration — to me it was as unbelievable as Clark Kent being able to hide the fact that he is Superman by simply putting on a pair of glasses. And yet, here we are — in the midst of a global health pandemic, millions of Americans refuse to listen to the science and instead seek comfort in the politics of it.

The state and federal governments’ knee-jerk reaction when Covid-19 first surfaced in the U.S. was to shut nearly everything down. Political and economic pressure led to the gradual reopening, which was predicated upon the public taking personal responsibility to follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines to slow the spread of the virus. Those actions included wearing a facial covering in public, not gathering in large crowds and frequent hand washing.

If people have been following the hand washing recommendation as frequently as they are wearing masks and avoiding large crowds, I’m never shaking anyone’s hand ever again.

Our lack of adherence to the recommendations show — every day sets a new record for virus case confirmations, which alone could be attributed to greater testing. But we’re also setting records for the number of people hospitalized due to Covid-19, and that’s the frightening part.

The argument against the recommendations tends to be “well, the majority of people who get Covid-19 don’t die.” And that’s true. But it’s also true that five out of six people find Russian roulette to be completely harmless — that doesn’t mean I want to play though.

You can put the odds in your favor. Follow the guidelines, and maybe Texas can begin to reopen again.

Klark Byrd is the managing editor of The Paris News. He can be reached at 903-785-6960 or

Managing Editor

Klark Byrd is the managing editor of The Paris News and the editor of Paris Life Magazine. He resides in Paris with his wife, Krystle, and their three children, Charlie, Annalise and Willow.

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