There was a tiny window when it was possible, if you squinted at just the right angle and allowed yourself an unreasonable optimism, to feel hopeful about the prospects for the world. To feel as if we could be turning a corner on death and suffering.
That window, if ever it was open, seems to have slammed all the way shut this week. As has been true throughout the pandemic, guidance from health organizations tends to be lagging indicator of reality. And as has been true for all of time, the people who have the least to lose and the most to gain can be relied upon to be awful throughout a crisis.
Simone Biles quit the Olympics because, she said, she didn’t trust herself going into the vault and her other events. What courage to say that out loud, and what courage to do what you need to do in full and intimate knowledge of what the reaction will be. Simone Biles is 24.