Coronavirus Pandemic Opinion OPINION: Democrats Discuss — Taking matters into our own hands By Megan Gale Posted on April 20, 2020 7 min read 1 1 223 Megan Gale is a member of the Ohio University College Democrats. She is a freshman studying special education. The following article reflects the opinion and views of the author and does not present those of the Ohio University College Democrats. Please note that these views and opinions do not reflect those of The New Political. In times of crisis, we see leaders emerge, but we also see leaders fail. The president had the chance to really make a difference and help people, but he chose not to. The world needed the U.S. to step up and take action, but the president failed, leaving states to fend for themselves. Gov. Mike DeWine of Ohio has led the nation to action during this pandemic. DeWine was proactive from the start, recommending that colleges move to remote classrooms on March 10. At that time Ohio had only three confirmed cases of COVID-19, all in Cuyahoga County. When asked why he chose to act the way he did, he responded: “The answer is we’ve learned from what has happened in other countries and we’ve seen how fast this moves.” DeWine took great strides in flattening the curve in Ohio. DeWine then closed all K-12 schools on March 12, assuming that the closure would begin March 16 and would end on Friday, April 3. DeWine then extended the closure to May 1. On March 15, DeWine announced that the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) ordered that all bars and restaurants will close everything except carryout and delivery. On March 16, Amy Acton, director of the ODH, issued an order that postponed the voting in the primary election originally scheduled on March 17. DeWine and Acton worked together to help keep Ohioans safe, and their actions put Ohio under the spotlight while encouraging other states to take the same measures. Acton has been a major influencer in this crisis, and she has transformed Ohio into leading the nation despite a lack of help from Washington, D.C. While DeWine and Acton played a huge part in aiding Ohioans, smaller communities banded together and made a huge difference to many people. In Holmes County, with the nation’s largest concentration of Amish people, the citizens have been working closely with hospitals around the country. Amish community leaders are working directly with the Cleveland Clinic to make protective gear for hospitals and their workers. The Amish also made wood room dividers for hospitals in New York. While the Amish community is usually isolated from the rest of Ohio, during this crisis they have stepped up and taken on a huge responsibility. There is no doubt that their efforts have saved hundreds if not thousands of lives, not only in Ohio but across the nation. Berlin Gardens, which normally makes garden furniture from recycled plastic milk jugs, has been completing orders upwards of 20,000 plastic face shields. The Troyer family made 20,000 nose clips for face masks in just one night. The Cleveland Clinic has increased its order to 10,000 masks a day along with protective gowns. On a smaller level, cities like Strongsville and Seven Hills lit up their sidewalks with lanterns to show support for people who have been affected by COVID-19 and for health care workers. The lanterns were a sign of unity in these hard times. In many cities, people have been writing chalk messages to others on sidewalks. My own family has written messages and left chalk out for people to respond so we can stay connected. Ohioians and our leaders have acted as role models for the rest of the U.S. At this time the president is lacking the leadership he needs to aid this nation, and DeWine stepped up and saved lives. The lack of accountability the federal government has taken during this time of crisis has been offset by the swift actions of DeWine and the sense of community amongst Ohioans. In periods of crisis, people need to come together for the greater good. In this case, they shouldn’t come together literally but should do everything in their power to support fellow Americans.