As we sit here on Guam and watch this pandemic run its course, we are now faced with the opportunity to help those who have sworn to give their lives to protect us and our nation from all perils – the crew members of the USS Theodore Roosevelt currently docked here on Guam.

These young men and women are normally sailing the vast Pacific practicing skills, launching mock missions, and practicing their emergency drills on their flight deck and within the many decks below.

The flight deck of an aircraft carrier is said to be the most dangerous place to work in the world. Yet these young men and women have volunteered to serve our nation and to protect those of us here on Guam and throughout the balance of America.

They sail the seas, normally live in very small quarters and work shifts around the clock to ensure the carrier is ready to fight and protect us should the need arise.

Now it is our turn to support them by helping them with a place to live while being tested for COVID-19 during the time their ship is made ready to safely accept their return and set sail again.

There will likely be those narrow-minded people who voice their self-serving concerns about why Guam should have to deal with this.

These young men and women do not raise the same concerns when faced with a battle at sea – they simply take care of each other and, in so doing, also take care of us.

So here is my suggestion for all of us land dwellers on Guam:

Join me on a short ride on the Guam Time Machine back to the days of Moses and the turmoil that faced him and those with him.

Back when the people of Israel were wandering in the dessert, and people became extremely sick, from the bites or stings of what were described as "fiery flying serpents." Whatever they were, they were certainly just as bad or worse than our COVID-19. So, what did Moses do?

The Lord told Moses to make a brass serpent, put it on a stick – the very symbol used even today by our doctors – and walk among the people. The message was simple. Look upon the serpent, and you will be healed.

A lot of people complained. What kind of science is that? How can looking at a snake on a stick cure anything? We will not be fooled by that kind of foolishness.

So, those who did look were healed, and those who refused died. Because the way was so simple, and the task easy to perform, people just ignored it, and perished.

Here on Guam and at this time, we have simple tasks to perform as well.

Wash your hands often, drink a lot of water, keep your hands away from your face. Practice good sanitation, and keep your distance – minimum of 6 feet. And, this destroyer called COVID-19 will not touch your life.

And remember, as we have been taught, be wary of those who peddle hate, discord and ridicule. They do not have you or our island's best interests at heart.


Lee P. Webber is a former president and publisher of media organizations on Guam and Hawaii, former director of operations for USA Today International/Asia, and a longtime business and civic leader on Guam.

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