I’m writing from a place of anger today.
We’re on the 5th week of being quarantined and I just don’t understand people who don’t take what’s going on seriously. I can’t figure out if it’s willful ignorance, an invincibility complex, or simply selfishness that has people not following guidelines and basically behaving and saying things that reflect a lack of seeing COVID-19 as serious. I just don’t get it.
Everyday it seems that I wake up to a story about someone who has passed away from this terrible virus. Someone who has died alone, due to the fact that those infected with this virus have to be quarantined. And if it is not a story like that then it is one about how pushed to the brink -mentally, physically, and emotionally- healthcare workers in areas particularly hit by the virus are. There are the statistics, the facts about how little is still known about the disease, the increased precautions we’re given by the week, predictions, etc. It’s a never-ending news cycle (I’m not even going to mention the shit-show known as the White House briefings because aside from Dr. Fauci’s updates, what’s the point) which seems to make the feeling of uncertainty even worse.
And yet with all that, there are still people who out in public can’t seem to stand on the lines in grocery stores designated to keep the 6ft distance, or go around without anything on their faces (despite the fact that that was just signed into law as being required in my county). You have people like my friends and I having to scold our parents and elders in our family who can’t seem to grasp that they need to stay home until there’s a definite “all clear” because their age and health level makes them sensitive to this, regardless of all the shit they’ve seen on Facebook and news that their local area is relatively okay in comparison to other places (seriously, don’t get me started on this one because the insanity of having to reverse roles while your parent is acting like an illogical teenager is just … man.) And let’s not forget my personal favorite people, the ones talking about conspiracy theories about this not being real – and I swear just trying to follow the logic they start with makes my head hurt. While I’ve thought I was fine, I think my limit has been reached. Like I already was doing okay with staying in, as surreal as it has been, but the fact that being in means not having to deal with other people’s foolishness has really made home the only place locally that I want to be.
I mean seriously – is it a wishful thinking thing? Is it the thought that if they defy everything then things will go back to “normal” and they can go back to how life was for them? Or has it not hit close to home for them? I really think this is what it is. Apparently it’s not enough to be grateful that it hasn’t affected them or someone in their family. No, it seems to be that if that hasn’t happened then apparently it’s not real. Why does it take something arriving on their front step for people to finally take something seriously? I would never wish anything like this on anyone, and yet it seems like it would take being personally affected for some people to get it.
This disease is indiscriminate. It doesn’t care about your age, your race, your gender, your income level, your education level, your sexuality, none of that. And it is growing exponentially among some communities (ahem, African-Americans) at a faster rate than others. Yet and still, some people still don’t get it. It’s sad to think what it will take for them to.