Originally published as "Now Is No Time for Spectator Democracy," Education Week, March 23, 2020.
It is safe to say that social distancing has become part of our new daily lexicon. It’s important to know that this is saving people’s lives, but I want us all to recognize that in this world of social distancing, we do not need to continue our practice of spectator democracy that keeps us sitting on the sidelines while others make the important decisions for us.
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing is a form of civic duty, something we are doing to protect the most vulnerable of our society. We’ve given up March Madness for social media tags like #stayhome and #stayhomesavelives that build solidarity around our shared stories of staying in. And while we think about what we’ve lost, we are hoping that we can hold on to something much more important: each other.