As a Colorado woman reported to her job providing an essential public service during the COVID-19 pandemic, one of her neighbors apparently decided the appropriate response would be to write her a letter chastising her for not staying home and endangering the community.
A member of the Jefferson County, Colorado, citizen lockdown mob reportedly became triggered after watching Heather Silchia leaving her home each day and left a note on her car windshield that proved to be a case study of the pitfalls of judging books by their covers.
The note revealed that the neighbor had been watching Silchia’s every move and logging her behavioral habits, but their ignorant actions would soon backfire in a humiliating fashion.
KDVR reported that Silchia, who works the graveyard shift as a 911 dispatcher at JeffCom 911, found the note on her car one morning last month. The note scorned her for leaving her home during the COVID-19 outbreak and made unsavory comments about her three children.
Silchia, who lives just a few minutes south of Denver in Centennial, shared the windshield note with KDVR, and it contains the words of a person in desperate need of a refresher in civility.
“PLEASE STAY HOME!” the message began.
“I noticed a few days a week you leave home with your baby and return a short time later without it. Then I see the man of the house arrive with the baby later in the afternoon while your vehicle hasn’t moved all day. This leads me to believe that the kid is in daycare.”
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“STOP,” the note ordered Silchia. “I am assuming that man has an essential job since he is gone all day but if you are home there is no reason for your child to be in daycare at a time like this.”
“I also see you leave shortly after your husband (I assume) gets home,” the note continued. “You aren’t wearing any sort of uniform and I have never seen you wear a mask. Bars are closed and you couldn’t possibly be getting groceries every night (which would also require you to wear a mask) so again I ask you to please stay home.”
“Also, do everyone in the neighborhood a favor and keep your older kids inside. They are loud,” the note said. “Help do your part in keeping our town safe and STOP LEAVING YOUR HOME!”
“Sincerely, All your neighbors,” it concluded.
The letter went beyond being creepy with one person appearing to actually be tracking the movements of their neighbor.
While a majority of stories about excessive behavior reported during the nation’s lockdowns have been about government officials and overzealous law enforcement officers, this story is an important reminder that public servants are people, too.
And even those fine people can become targets by those who have taken it upon themselves to police their communities on behalf of what they deem to be appropriate — or inappropriate, in this case.
Silchia was both gracious and humble when speaking about the note to KDVR.
“If somebody’s having a bad day, and they’re taking it out on you, just be kind, and that’s something I have to do every day in my job,” Silchia said.
The woman also reminded her neighbor, whoever that might be, that she and other dispatchers are on the front line when emergencies occur, and that their lives are already stressful.
“Even though we just answer the phone and we don’t respond to the call ourselves, we are the first to respond to people’s cry for help,” she said.
Americans have by and large taken government health recommendations seriously since COVID-19 began its spread across the country.
But the ignorant actions of some people, such as Silchia’s neighbor, are an example of why a growing number of people are losing patience with the overall public response to the pandemic.
What happened to being neighborly and showing patience, grace and Christian charity, especially during a time of tribulation?
Actions by borderline tyrannical government and nosy neighbors do little to help the country climb out of a less-than-ideal situation, and further sow seeds of distrust between citizens and governments.
They are also pitting neighbors against each other, at least in one Colorado community.
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