While they feel frustrated and isolated, local teens do understand the need for social distancing and stay-at-home orders.
They reflected on it during the Zoom virtual meeting several Ste. Genevieve High School [SGHS] and Valle Catholic High School [VCHS] students took part in with the Herald on March 31.
“I know it stinks right now for all of us and it’s a horrible situation, but I think in the grand scheme of things it had to happen,” SGHS junior Katelyn Fuller said. “We had to do this, in order to save people in our community. It sucks, but it’s something that had to happen. We couldn’t get around it.”
“I agree,” Valle senior Kayleen Warren said. “I would rather have almost everybody be as safe as they can be with this going on, rather than going to school — even though it really does suck — and risking my classmates’ lives or my life or my family’s life.”
Getting together with friends is an ongoing temptation.
“My friends and I have talked about just going to the softball field and sitting six feet apart from each other and just talking and hanging out again,” Warren said. “But all of our parents were not letting us do that. Which makes sense, but it sucks because whenever you need somebody to talk to, you really can’t.”
They understand the danger involved — especially to older generations.
“I get that this is dangerous, and my parents are older, so I understand they can be harmed and that makes me nervous,” Valle senior Ellie Gatzemeyer said. “But we still have a right to be upset because this was so unexpected. It just sucks because all of the plans that we make, like Kayleen said, I’m not working right now, so saving up money for all of the stuff we were going to do in the future, you can’t do that because we don’t have a job. So, it’s really hard to just adjust to all this.”
The teens expressed frustration that many in the most vulnerable age group — over age 60 — don’t seem to be taking the lock-down recommendations seriously.
“My last day I worked at the Kozy [Kitchen], it was breakfast and all of these older people were coming in and they’re watching the news,” said SGHS junior Blake Young. “Some of them didn’t know we were closing dining-in service. When we told them, you would think that their life just ended. They were saying, ‘This is over-reacting. This is just the government’s doing. It’s all just publicity,’ and stuff. And, I’m thinking, ‘How old are you? You’re in the at-risk category. Stay home!’”
See complete story in the April 8 edition of the Herald.