Coronavirus, The Media, and We The People

Source of photo: CDC.gov

Speaking strictly for myself, I’m a little tired of the media coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. “A little tired” is a bit of an understatement, but it more accurately describes how I feel about the current situation since other adjectives such as “frustrated”, “weary”, and “depressed” are descriptors of more extreme emotional reactions and not reflective of my true feelings, so “a little tired” will do.

That said, the facts do not care about my emotions, so enough about how I feel emotionally…

The facts are these:

FACT: the measures that state and federal governments are taking to limit the spread of the coronavirus, while extreme, are prudent.

FACT: While the total death count is approaching ten times that of the similar SARS (also a coronavirus) outbreak of 2002-2003, the more than 6,500 deaths from COVID-19 still pales in comparison to other pandemics throughout recorded human history (Mack/Forbes Magazine, 2020).

https://www.forbes.com/sites/ericmack/2020/03/16/see-how-coronavirus-compares-to-other-pandemics-through-history/#f381b987d1e2

NOTE: the cited Forbes article is from 16 March 2020. As of this writing, the death count stands at 39,014 worldwide.

https://www.cnn.com/interactive/2020/health/coronavirus-maps-and-cases/

Perhaps it will help to see it displayed graphically:

Source of photo: https://specials-images.forbesimg.com/imageserve/5e6fe438e1e61700080ef359/960×0.jpg?fit=scale

NOTE/FACT: updated worldwide death count puts this pandemic above the Ebola outbreak of 2014, but well below the swine flu pandemic of 2009-2010 (200,000 deaths) and we did not take such drastic measures for the swine flu.

FACT: given the above perspective, the perception that the measures being taken by state and federal governments have political motives in a unique election year is very hard to ignore.

Please stay safe, which you should always do whether it’s coronavirus (COVID-19) or flu season, but I hope my readers will use the facts to put things in perspective and stop acting like sheep every time the media or our politicians use this situation to their advantage.

-The Rational Ram

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