I know I’ve written about this before, but I don’t feel like checking back to see how recently I have done. Hopefully, it’s longer than I think. The mental health roller coaster has definitely been the toughest thing about the pandemic. I’m sure anyone reading this is thinking, “No shit, genius.” If only the obviousness of the sentiment found two sentences earlier could alleviate somebody’s circumstances in some way. I’ve got obvious observations for days. Even though no two experiences are exactly alike, I feel like this moment could have a very unifying effect on humanity. If it was occurring in a vacuum, the chances of that would be a bit higher, but even in the highly polarized time that this has been piled on top of, any non-sociopath should be having an easier time identifying and sympathizing with the plight of their neighbor. Certainly, there are some countries where the citizens can be bothered to consider things that are beyond their personal physical reach. In those far-off lands, democratically-elected representatives are taking this opportunity to work together to make the meaningful changes that their fellow citizens want to see enacted. If you’re an American, this sounds like a fantastical fairy tale. If you’re from virtually any other democratic nation, you look with pity and horror at the reactions of many Americans to some pretty important, common sense goals. Nobody wants to help pay for anyone else’s troubles until they themselves have been mad the victim of some cruel policy. That is why, with the shared experience of the past year or so, I have some mild amount of hope that enough of us have seen personal consequences to help us see the light and get on board with a little bit of empathy for people that we don’t know or who don’t look like us.