In Spite of the Serious Statistics, Some Locations are Resuming Habits from before the Pandemic
There is almost an air of celebration afoot. Beaches in Southern California are sunny and crowded as if this is just any premature springtime heatwave. The stock market futures are rising. It’s as if all of us just can’t take any more of the depressing news. So we just stop paying attention.
Unfortunately the virus is still alert and ready. And, more likely than not, there will be new cases reported a week or two from now, right on cue, after this moment passes. Officially the “Safer at Home” order in the Los Angeles area remains in effect until May 15th. Judging from the traffic and the “non-essential” businesses that are opening up there is an unofficial attempt to end to the so called “lock-down”.
It’s as if almost no one read the article about the large percentage of asymptomatic carriers of the virus on the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt. Or the French navy’s flagship Charles de Gaulle, with over 1000 cases and counting. Or how in 1918 both San Francisco and Los Angeles ended quarantine precautions too soon and suffered a second wave, shortly after the first.
“Siren wails on November 21, 1918 signaled to San Franciscans that it was safe, and legal, to remove their masks. All signs indicated that the flu had abated. Schools re-opened, and theaters sought to make back the $400,000 they had lost during each of the six weeks they were closed… Barely two weeks after the celebratory removal of masks, new flu cases were reported. Five thousand new flu cases would surface in December 1918 alone.”EXCERPT FROM “THE FLU IN SAN FRANCISCO” / PBS
Headlines are Anticipating an End to the Pandemic even as the Experts Warn there is A Long Road Ahead
If you are reading articles about how States are reopening and America is getting back to business, be careful. Think about those sailors that were spreading the virus to each other thinking they were not sick. Oh, and by the way, as of April 20th, 8 of the crew members from the Theodore Roosevelt were hospitalized and one has died.
What all of this adds up to is that covid-19, a.k.a. the novel coronavirus is very, very contagious. And since it is impossible to know if you or I will be asymptomatic carriers or among those that become seriously ill, the best, most prudent advice is to continue precautions indefinitely. Taking care to prevent spread and prevent becoming infected ourselves is the least we can do. Celebration we can do anytime. As long as we are around for the beautiful day that a vaccine and an effective treatment are found.
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