I hope you will take what follows as an attempted report of facts and not my opinion. It is a personal statement, to some degree, because the reporting is not comprehensive or verified. Please think of it as an observation. I was born and raised in the American south. I have worked and lived in several southern states since graduation and have never lived outside the region, to my admitted ambivalence. I love to get out of the south whenever I can, to visit other regions, other countries. I wish I had discovered the pleasures of travel at a much younger age than I did. However, for myriad personal reasons, the south remains home. And it is a bit saddening when someone on television implies the people of the south have their heads in the sand when it comes to COVID-19 and are thereby endangering the nation as a whole. I don’t believe that to be true. In my hometown, the bars and cafes have been closed for weeks. Parks are closed. Festivals have been postponed, and most citizens have chosen, upon encouragement of local authorities, to self-isolate out of a dual sense of obligation and self-preservation. The local hospital, a first-class regional facility where a member of my family works, has even asked citizens not to attend church. Five people, by the way, died at that same hospital from the virus in a 48-hour period. I have a neighbor who is a respiratory therapist. He has a young family and slouches home every evening well past dark. I know that many cities and large towns in the south are experiencing similar circumstances. My point is, this region does take this crisis seriously and is approaching it much like any other. OK, this is the spongy part. It is no secret the south is a deep “red” region. I think it is safe to say, a lot of state officials have taken their cue from Washington and have been attempting an optimum balance of epidemiology and economics, a pinpoint which can only be guessed at from our present perspective; state officials undeniably prefer words such as “directive” and “guidelines” to words like “order.” I think this reaction at the top has been the focus of some outside the region. Like the nation, a lot of what is happening in the south has emerged at local and county levels, and it is not insignificant. I just want to reassure others. We got this. As much as anyone does.