Temper ingenuity with caution

There is a reason “Yankee ingenuity” is recognized throughout the world. We Americans have a reputation for identifying challenges and devising ways to overcome them.

Use your head if you decide to come up a home remedy, a way to stretch supplies such as those of food — or any other challenge to which you think you have a solution.

You may have seen reports that an anti-malaria drug, chloroquine, shows promise in battling COVID-19. Just a few days ago, a man and his wife living near Phoenix, Arizona, decided to try it.

They found some chloroquine phosphate, a substance use to clean fish tanks. They ingested some of it. He died. At last report, she was in critical condition.

The list of potential side-effects of ingesting chloroquine phosphate is a mile long. Several of them are life-threatening. Online medical advice websites warn against using the substance for any reason, except with the advice and supervision of a doctor.

Times of stress often bring out the best in us, frequently making us more inventive. Most of the time, that is good. But, as the tragedy in Arizona demonstrates, caution needs to be the watchword.


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