Courage in the Face of Contagion

Recently I attended a graduation at York University. You can not help but be moved watching a parade of young people who have worked so hard, march across the stage and pick up their Bachelor of this or their Masters of that—young graduates filled with such hope, such promise, and crushing personal debt.

The last group to graduate were the nurses. They are a tribe onto themselves. They were by far the loudest of the bunch. They didn't care, they cheered each other on louder and harder than anyone else. They celebrated as if nobody was watching. They had the best shoes. And as they strode across that stage I could not help but think what kind of occupation are they marching into.

We’ve all seen the news. We live on a continent that is currently hysterical about a terrible disease that very few of us know anything about. And we’ve been here before. In my lifetime, AIDS happened; good people, decent people, family and friends were scared and ran the other way. Nurses—they went into the room, they held the hands. When SARS happened, when the city of Toronto was bathing in Purell®, the nurses went to work every day. And when they got sick, other nurses replaced them.

And now we have this terrible thing, Ebola. It has yet to, and perhaps never will reach our shores. But if it does, we know what will happen. We will run for the hills, they will run into the room.

So let us take a moment and praise the nurses. And let it be known that in this country, in Canada, no nurse should be denied the equipment or training they need to do their job safely. We should be there for the nurses because they’re always there for us.

Posted: 22/10/2014 9:24:58 AM | with 0 comments

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