Shouldn’t we all practice the Golden Rule by wearing masks? A parable to help consider COVID-19:

Out of the world rose the free marketers. They believed they were entitled to all the earth’s bounty, and those not of them deserved misery.

Then there arose a mighty plague that smote the rich and the poor, the high and the low. Many died.

The high and mighty denied this fierce plague. “Fear not," they said. "Keep the markets open. Let there be freedom in our lands.”

But the plague worsened, and still more died.

The high found sanctuary behind their walls of spiritual pride. They resisted most strongly, as the powerful can.

Warnings from the wise about such gatherings were not heard. A few could not hide from the plague. The high said, “We are protected in the blood of Jesus. No harm will come to us. We will be free to worship as we please.”

Again, the high were obsessed with reopening the markets. Despite the now great and still growing death toll, they said, “What is more important, a free market or human life?"

Countless were struck dead.

Finally, the voice of God was heard. “I sent warnings with few deaths. But your shouts were of remaining free. When more died, your spiritual blindness would not let you see. After countless died, your markets were once more thrown open without restraint.”

“For all these sins, how shall any of you be left not to die?”

Erwin R. Rud, Fosston (formerly of Elgin)