Matt Roloff loves his grandchildren.
This point cannot be debated.
However, even the very best of intentions can have dangerous consequences — and this is now the basis for a controversy that has enveloped the Little People, Big World star.
In early March, around the time the Coronavirus started to really spread in America and be considered a pandemic, Roloff headed down to Arizona with girlfriend Caryn Chandler.
As Matt has said on social media, he only intended to spend two weeks down south at the time.
But then shelter-at-home orders were issued across the country — in response to this very contagious virus — and Matt had to change his plans.
Those two weeks turned into approximately two months.
In very late April, Matt then announced he was returning to Oregon, explaining on Instagram that he was taking special precautions to avoid contracting the illness.
"I’m cleared & ready to drive the 20 hour’s back to the farm — after all this time isolating in Arizona (tons of FaceTime calls)," Matt wrote as a caption to photo of grandkids Ember and Jackson.
He added, back on April 30:
"I’m ready to see all 4 grandkids.
"It would be easier to fly back but By driving I can avoid any outside contact with anyone .. so hoping for a shorter quarantine period after getting home to the farm."
Fast forward to May 6 and Matt shared a video of himself playing with Ember.
He wrote as a caption in this case:
After returning home safety from the drive from AZ and then isolating for a few days ..I finally got to see all 4 of my precious grandkids. How fun.
A serious reminder of why I’ll always make it a priority to spend as much time as possible with these amazing children of Gods creation. #lovemygrandkids.
Ember and Jackson wouldn’t let me out of their sight today. It was a great day to try and teach what 6 ft looked like. It kinda of worked. Most of the time!
We still had fun all day long, very blessed to have a big farm to use to spread out.
Despite driving 20 hours and despite waiting about a week before seeing these toddlers, and despite trying to stay six feet away from everyone, Matt has still garnered quite a bit of backlash for his actions.
Wrote one critic in response:
Not much social distancing going on here. No masks anywhere. I’m not trying to be provocative, I’m genuinely concerned for your health and those babies.
Someone on Reddit also wrote:
It’s gonna be hard to live your life again if you die from catching the virus because you weren’t taking any precautions.
Indeed, Matt is 58 years old.
He is considered high-risk for Covid-19 due to his age and due to his type 2 diabetes, which he was diagnosed with in 2007.
For both his own sake and the sake of his loved ones, strangers online are concerned.
“We still need to take reasonable precautions to help prevent the spread of the virus. Matt needed to quarantine for 14 days not a few days,” a fan wrote of his quick return.
It’s very hard to sit back and really judge Matt from afar in this case.
He’s clearly aware of the dangers out there and clearly took a few important steps to avoid the virus himself and to avoid giving it to others.
But did he do enough? Should he have waited longer to interact with his family members? Did he deserve this grandparent-shaming?
You tell us, readers.