Important column, Dick, thanks. Question: on the matter of surface contacts, at a very practical/granular level, what, in hindsight (or in real time) would you suggest journalists could or should have done to better assess and/or communicate the true (minimal) risks? It is only now that we are hearing the 1-in-10,000 number; nobody was putting that out back in May (although those of us who stopped wiping down every little thing before we touched it and did not get sick might have had at least an anecdotal clue that all of this "deep cleaning" should have been better interrogated--but how?). Also, as I recall, it was pretty quickly that Dr. Fauci reversed the "masks don't help" guidance to the general public, when asymptomatic transmission was recognized as a silent enemy. And, it was as early as March 2020 that the New York Times offered a sewing pattern for homemade masks (https://www.nytimes.com/article/how-to-make-face-mask-coronavirus.html) (another reason to bring home ec back to the school curriculum). I don't quibble with your essential point but I am not sure what the solve coulda/shoulda/woulda have been in some of the particulars you mention. Thanks.

Expand full comment