We have arrived at Independence Day weekend and typically, summer activities would be in full swing.

Normally, we would be celebrating the end of the school year but that really came in March; watching the traditional fireworks display of Amesbury Days at Woodsom Farm but COVID-19 fizzled that and attending Fourth of July cookouts, but we’re still social distancing.

Slowly, businesses are starting to get back to work, there’s hope for a return of professional sports soon, and we are now able to enjoy a dinner inside our favorite restaurant.

Unfortunately, I don’t think we’ll ever get back to “normal” as the fear of the virus and a second wave looms. Facial masks, six feet apart, handwashing and other precautions are here for a while so we’ve got to get used to a new “norm.”

I wanted to let readers know the front lobby of the police station has reopened and the prescription collection box is once again available. As I mentioned in last week’s column, the opioid abuse problem continues so removing unwanted medications from your home is one step to assure items do not get into the wrong hands.

Expired or unused medications can be dropped off at the station, where they will be destroyed safely as part of the DEA Drug Take Back program.

Please do not deposit sharps, medical instruments or thermometers in the box and there is no need to empty the vials or remove any labels. Liquids are accepted, but it’s suggested they be placed into a container to prevent spills.

Child passenger safety instructor Officer Dave Clark will be resuming the installation and inspection of child car seats soon. The use of a child safety seat can save a life in a crash so assuring it’s properly installed is crucial. To schedule an appointment for an installation or to ask a question, please contact Officer Clark at davidc@amesburyma.gov or 978-388-1217.

Finally, on behalf of Chief Scholtz and the members of the Amesbury Police Department, I wanted to wish readers a very happy and safe Independence Day.

As we celebrate the 244th birthday of the United States, we are truly experiencing challenging times in our history. We all need to remember that challenges are nothing new to Americans, having faced many during the short time of U.S. history.

Unfortunately, too often history is forgotten instead of becoming a learning opportunity for change. Sadly, it seems we are too eager to fight among each other than to sit together, working out differences and constructing a positive change.

Amazing accomplishments can be achieved through teamwork while tremendous harm can be caused by division. While our recent failures have overshadowed our past accomplishments, the people of our nation have made countless contributions to world history.

Nothing good comes easy and freedoms certainly came at a very high price, but we all need to work together to assure a better future for all generations to come.

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