YES, WE'RE PANICKING! We have reason!
Sunday, March 15, 2020
The Covid-19 pandemic is causing panic and breeding fear of others. As rabbi Shai Held writes in The Atlantic, it has led to callous attitudes from some quarters toward the elderly (65+), who are most at risk of dying from the coronavirus. This piece opened my eyes to how dehumanizing this crisis has been for the most vulnerable among us.
The virus has a long, symptom-free incubation period where you are actually CONTAGIOUS and unintentionally infecting others -- just by going to the grocery store and touching ANYTHING, just by buying gasoline and touching the gas handle, just by going to church, just by standing within 6 feet of someone. It has an ASTOUNDING 80% infectious rate!
So you're young and have little to fear (you'll just get a mild case) from going to the grocery store. But it could be DEATH for someone else. I'm a 63 y.o. aerobics instructor but if _I_ go to the grocery store and get infected, I'll bring it home to my 70 y.o. husband who has heart problems and to my 2 y.o. immune-deficient grandson -- and while _I_ might be safe, they'll likely end up in the hospital.
Well, that's if there will be any BEDS in the hospital, or if there will be any equipment available for them if needed, or any doctors or nurses to care for them. That's the nature of a pandemic. It is NOT business-as-usual! No beds, no spare equipment? Too bad, so sad, you are left on your own to DIE!
So YEAH -- I spent my time and my money last week and I stocked up a 4-6 week supply of food and other essentials so I wouldn't have to risk coming into contact with a can of corn that an infected person touched. I've taken a leave of absence from work. It is called social distancing and I'm NOT ashamed to be practicing it. It is PROVEN to save lives. I might have just saved my husband's life. I might have just saved my grandson's life. Heck, I might have just saved MY life. I might have just saved YOURS.