Los Angeles Fire Department Capt. Elliot Ibanez, left, receives the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine given by LAFD paramedic Anthony Kong at Station 4, Monday, Dec. 28, 2020, in Los Angeles. (Gary Coronado/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)

2020 began with so much enthusiasm. It just sounded so cool.

 But now, there is no one at least in their right mind who wants to hold onto this year.

Every day we lose people who we loved and cared about and they loved us back. 

Those who we never met, but who inspired us. Composers, musicians, sports figures, actors — we see their contribution. 

We have lost  teachers, who did their best to guide and help our children.

COVID-19 has collapsed our health care systems and claimed the lives of doctors, nurses, and firefighters who did their best to save our lives.

And hundreds of thousands more have been right between the eyes by the pandemic, right at home. This pandemic has taken parents and grandparents, husbands and wives…and their children.

Our neighborhoods, cities, country have been devastated, stopped in their tracks. Businesses are shuttered. People are not able to pay their bills and fear losing their homes. Some find themselves for the first time driving through at food giveaways. 

2020 should humble us in knowing that the need to work around the clock, to buy material trappings, can never be viewed as more important than our families. The fanciest cars, clothes, or houses can’t replace them. 

This pandemic has given parents responsible for overseeing their child’s socially-distanced learning an understanding of how truly difficult a teacher’s job is, how valuable and influential they are to their children’s education and their ability and intellectual confidence to function in this very complex world.

With people dying in LA county every 10 minutes, and the Northeast Valley being an epicenter for COVID-19, 2020 has been a reality check for how fragile life really is and the false security that too many people have so much so that they think little about being their brother’s and sister’s keeper. 

They continue to selfishly ignore all warnings of public health professionals and scientists, and instead listen to a dangerous President who thought so little of us, he caused the pandemic to spread, causing more lost lives than the tragic 9/1l act that so gripped the nation 20 years ago. 

There is no dispute — Trump’s COVID-19 inaction killed Americans.  By the time Trump announced guidelines for battling and containing the spread of the virus, the United States was already the world leader in its rate of coronavirus infection. Scientists cite 90 percent of all American COVID-19 deaths being attributed to the Trump administration’s delay to act between March 2 and 16.

The county Department of Public Health confirmed 227 coronavirus-related fatalities on Tuesday, Dec. 29, pushing the county closer to the grim 10,000-death mark.

The attack was already well upon us and yet Trump continued to deflect and play it down, opening the door to conspiracy theories, and by example encouraged people at his own rallies not to wear masks .

These “maskholes” that may have no symptoms, but can be “spreaders,” continue to carelessly endanger us by not caring that the person entering that same medical building as they may have a weakened immune system, or may be a cancer patient on chemo.  They continue to hold gatherings and refuse to stay-at-home.

Selfishly, they are likely to only care when they wake up unable to smell or taste, are running a high fever, and will at last see its seriousness when they are turned away at the hospital for lack of beds, instead being handed a couple of prescriptions and forced to do what they can to save their own lives by staying-at-home.