THUMBS UP: To the sacrifices being made by athletes at all levels throughout the state in the spirit of the greater good. Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder pointed out in a tweet that it really is the ultimate in teamwork.
THUMBS UP: To football players with local ties who are getting great contracts in the NFL, guys like BYU stars Kyle Van Noy, Taysom Hill and Timpview's Xavier Su'a-Filo.
THUMBS DOWN: I realize that Florida seems to be a breeding ground for news-of-the-weird style behavior, but packing the state's beaches during the coronavirus outbreak with thousands of raging millennials as they partake in coming-of-age Spring Break rituals seems beyond the pale, even for The Sunshine State. While Spring Breakers raised the roof early, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was late to the party, but finally came to his senses by closing bars and beaches (to more than groups of 10) on Thursday.
THUMBS UP: Kudos to everyone that's doing their part to help stop the spread of coronavirus. This is probably the biggest sacrifice made by the American public since World War II and the challenge will be to stay true to our commitment for the weeks or months needed to break the back of this disease.
THUMBS DOWN: At a time when we need clear, concise and accurate information from our leaders, President Donald Trump appears to drag up a totally unnecessary and divisive issue by starting to refer to the coronavirus as the "Chinese virus." Regardless of the origins of the disease, the current outbreak is almost universally known as coronavirus or COVID-19 (the president himself called it coronavirus until this week). Trying to "rebrand" the disease in the middle of a crisis isn't helpful as people continue to look for information under the disease's commonly accepted name. It unfortunately shows that Trump isn't above trying to score points when the focus should 100% be on helping staunch the spread of the disease.
THUMBS UP: Kudos to local stores which recognized the early problem of keeping vital products available in the midst of hoarding efforts (toilet paper, anyone?) and dealing with large crowds in the face of social distancing mandates. Several such retail stories have not only instituted early shopping times for the senior population, which faces heightened threats from coronavirus, but also forming lines outside the store and limiting toilet paper package purchases to one per person.
THUMBS UP: To our small business owners for taking the brunt of a really crazy situation. We encourage residents who can to continue ordering takeout meals, and if needed, to buy from or utilize those business that are open during this time. We also give an extra nod to all of the workers who may not be working. Thanks for your time, energy and dedication to the public service.
THUMBS UP: To all the teachers who are having a drastic change in how they teach, prepare class plans and are working hard to make sure all of their students continue to get the education they need. Kudos also to parents who are striving to do their best as at-home school assistants. We encourage everyone to keep the reading, writing and math a part of each child's everyday life.
THUMBS DOWN: To Utah's 4th Congressional District Rep. Ben McAdams announcing that he tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday after developing "mild cold-like symptoms" over the weekend. Best wishes to Congressman McAdams and his family as he self-quarantines in his Utah home.
THUMBS UP: To news agencies throughout the state, including the Daily Herald, for working hard at keeping the public informed amid the coronavirus pandemic and a series of earthquakes hitting Utah. It is great that there are so many reporters, editors and producers dedicated to getting important information out to readers, viewers and listeners.
THUMBS UP: To the things keeping me sane during self-isolation: books, Netflix, neighborhood walks, Cadbury Eggs, funny memes and watercolors. Oh, and family too, I guess.
THUMBS DOWN: To the first day of spring on Thursday (and the stupid groundhog that got my hopes up with an early spring prediction). In self-isolation, I would love to have some sunshine and fresh air streaming in through the windows, but nope. Utah has to celebrate the beginning of Spring with a chilly, gray, wet day.
THUMBS UP: To President Donald Trump's proposed stimulus plan, which would send $1,000 to every American adult along with $500 per child -- not once, but twice -- over the period of a couple months for relief during the coronavirus crisis. It should be pointed out that the child payment is for those who are already here -- not for all the new births that will occur nine months from now as a result of everyone working from home.