March 20, 2020

Open Letter to Members and Friends of Nikola Tesla Historical Society of Alberta

Dear Members and Friends,

Re: COVID -19 Situation

I am thinking of each one of you and of your families at this difficult time.
Let’s all stay safe and stay home! Also, if you can help in any way, think about it and offer your
assistance. From my part, as Lillian, I wish to share this with you as I think that it’s rather important. In
my mind, extremely important.

Everyone is doing their best. Can’t thank enough our health workers and the health workers around the
world. Each one of them is a hero! Also, our leaders and the leaders throughout the world. However, I
noticed that we, the health authorities, politicians, media, are sending the following messages out,
which possibly trivialize the problem in the minds of a large portion of our population, that believe that
the virus is not something that they have to worry about.

1. "If you are healthy and not elderly, you’ll be ok. Even if you get the symptoms, these will
probably be mild and you may not even be aware that you have the virus." — Message: Go
on with your life as usual (and unintentionally spread the virus).
Make it clear: This virus is dangerous to everyone and it’s highly contagious...

2. "Stay home, as we want to protect the most vulnerable" — Message: I am fine, and very often, I
don’t realize that I can hurt others. Unfortunately, there are some folks who do not think of the
impact of their actions on other people’s lives, but only on their own. The levels of empathy

Make it clear: Stay home, be safe as this virus is dangerous to you and those around you!
3. "Another death, but the person had a precondition." — Message: It doesn’t matter that much
that we lost this person. Again, trivializing and justifying, as if we expected this person to die. I
don’t wish to rank my points, but this one affects me the most! Why is this even relevant?
One life is lost.

Make it clear and factual with no details: Another person has died….Period…..
I am sharing my private thoughts with you as I see clearly that with this kind of the rhetoric, we
globally “encourage” irresponsible behaviour and belittle the seriousness of the situation. This leads
directly to the spread of the virus while we are trying to contain it! (Think of the March vacationers in
Florida, birthday parties, etc.) In a way, as in the war, we are working for the enemy — only we do not
realize it. I realize that perhaps the authorities do not wish to frighten the population and cause panic;
however, we are in such a dangerous situation that we do not have a choice but to be direct. No ifs and

Please think deeply about my points. I am extremely concerned. If you can share these with your family
and friends, perhaps we can make some more people act responsibly and practice social distancing by
simply staying home. In a hypothetical case, should the whole world stand still for 28 days, the virus
would have nowhere to go. It’s not too much to ask people to stay home. Each one of us, without
symptoms, could be positive with the virus and while we feel fine, could spread it around.
I would like to hear your comments too. Ideas? How can we help?

Wishing you all the best and hoping that we will return to our exciting Tesla activities soon!

Lillian— from my home to yours

PS — Tesla wrote many letters to newspaper editors. Perhaps we can too! I will! We are all in this

Lillian D. Beltaos, President
Nikola Tesla Historical Society of Alberta
780 437 6305