Letter: Kurt Aschermann, Leesburg

Editor: The world-wide devastation brought on by the coronavirus pandemic has given us a world changed.  First and foremost, we have been reminded, again, that the world is interconnected. We have taken steps—personal, political, governmental—to help those in need. We have learned that something as simple as washing our hands and wearing a mask can prevent the spread of disease.

What else have we learned during this extraordinary time? Clearly, we have learned to never say never.

Admit it – sometimes we are a socialist country—and thank god for that

I’m always shocked when people complain about socialism creeping into our system … until they need it.The stimulus package and its subsequent payouts to many individuals and businesses is a perfect example of how government can step in when people are hurting. Why not continue to explore how we can better support the lives of all people in our country, even if it means taking steps that socialist countries have been doing forever, like exploring what a guaranteed minimum income can look like.(That’s what we did with the stimulus package right?) And, certainly, this pandemic has proven once and for all that we need health insurance for everyone.

It’s time to accept the idea that sometimes we have to raise taxes not lower them

Again, here in this county where I live, you can’t get elected dog catcher without promising to lower taxes or at least hold them at the current level. Why? Does anything actually cost less today? Stop this lie that all people care about is lower taxes. I, for one, care about good services and sound government.If it costs me a little more, I’ll be fine. And we need to stop spreading the myth that lowering taxes will increase government revenue. All it does is cause larger deficits that we eventually have to raise taxes to pay for.

And finally, we have learned that for a better world, we need toelect more women

The countries that have handled this pandemic the best are run by women. Germany, New Zealand, Iceland, even Taiwan—where the leaders put politics aside and brought everyone together to solve problems, are run by women. Women compromise and build coalitions. Men fight and have to be on top. Elect more women at every single level of government, and the world gets more compassionate and caring.

The pandemic has changed us. Perhaps if we really acknowledge how it has changed us, we can see long-term benefit to continuing to live into that change.

Kurt Aschermann, Leesburg