There's no end in sight for the panic-fueled, power-grabbing, civil rights-violating, freedom-robbing lockdown of our citizens.

The saddest part is that most New Jerseyans don't seem to be bothered enough to do anything about it. Whether it's apathy, fear or ignorance, it's pretty sad. Maybe too many people have a bullet-proof income working for the government, or a large enough corporation unaffected by this and can work from home. It's hard to know who to trust for accurate information on the death rate or the infection rate. The numbers change and suspicions of inflated numbers of death due solely to the virus abound.

For the longest time, I didn't know anyone who even tested positive for COVID-19, then two weeks ago my 89 year-old mother came down with it in an assisted living facility. Yesterday, she was taken off full quarantine after suffering very mild symptoms. We have not been able to visit her in almost two months. The waiting and worrying was torture.

For too many in our state, the results were far more tragic, and our hearts go out to them. Everyone has their own story of anguish in this time of uncertainty. The one thing that seems more clear in these days is that we may have seriously over-reacted and shot ourselves in the face over a pandemic, the more serious likes of which we have seen before.

The Hong Kong flu of 1968-69 killed between 1 and 4 million people, but Woodstock went on that summer without anyone batting an eye at the virus. A decade before in 1957-58, the Asian Flu killed an estimated 116,000 Americans, and between 1 and 2 million people worldwide and life went on. People talk about a "new normal" and what will that be like. We have been living a new normal since around 2006. That's when social media emerged and the flood of instant unfiltered communication and information overload has changed the way we live and react to life. So what will the new-new normal be like? Are you ready to return to the regular new normal?

The bigger, more important question is, are you ready to return to a sense of normalcy with some precautions? Whatever your answer, the truth is we have to. We owe it to ourselves and our children and grandchildren. We can't go on living like this, not just for the sake of the economy, which may never fully recover, but for the sake of society as a whole. It will take caution and thoughtful measures, but most of all it will take courage. The courage to face life and it's challenges without surrendering to fear and the over-reaching, overbearing power of big government.

QUEST FOR A CURE: Thursday at 7 p.m., New Jersey 101.5 hosts a live discussion on NJ-driven advancements in coronavirus treatment and research that could save lives, help return NJ to work and even make progress toward a vaccine. Listen on New Jersey 101.5 FM, the NJ 101.5 app or

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy. Any opinions expressed are Dennis' own.

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