I was infuriated to learn that Maine State Music Theatre was forced to cancel an entire production due to the Actors’ Equity union’s monitoring of positive COVID tests. Even though the affected actors were obviously not on the stage spewing germs into the audience and experienced very mild or no symptoms, the show still had to be shut down, which could be disastrous for this beloved Maine institution. Hello, people – the pandemic is long over, but still random, ridiculous 2020 COVID-19 regulations and rules are interrupting the return to the cherished activities of our lives. (Note to Portland Press Herald – stop using the word “pandemic.”)

The COVID virus is here to stay, but the danger is significantly reduced for vaccinated and boostered people, so why are we still being regulated and, in my case, significantly annoyed by outdated rules that were valid in 2020 but are archaic, unreasonable and unnecessary in 2022? It sadly seems that some people, government officials and other institutions are stuck in 2020 and are unwilling or unable to get over it. I will say it again: The pandemic is OVER.

Most of us are pretty smart and know how to be careful, which activities to attend and when to wear a mask; we learned our lessons in 2020 and we don’t need more over-protective protocols. Let’s graduate and move forward into more normalcy and fewer cancellations.

Barbara DeeSouth Portland