A Reflection on Year One of the Novel Coronavirus Pandemic
Taking on a pandemic was a big ask. No one wanted to do it. It’s an unprecedented, historical nightmare, but here we are, a year later, still doing it. Today may very well be the eve of the United States racking up half a million deaths. The New York Times is prepared for this milestone. Yet, we still have people claiming it’s “no worse” than the seasonal flu.
There was an esitmated 61,000 deaths during the 2017–2018 flu season, the highest annual influenza death toll during the past decade. As of this morning, the U.S. has recorded 498,033 COVID-19 deaths, and the 2020–2021 Coronavirus season is far from over.
And hey, while we’re at it, let’s really push the limits of the American people by tossing in economic recession like it’s the hunger games, psychosis inducing political crisis, civil unrest on every side of the fence, the rise of white supremacy (because, WTF?), Donald Trump hijacking headlines and our democracy, and let’s never forget the steady stream of natural disasters.
Is it just me, or does this shit just keep piling up?
But whatever, right? We forged on, like soldiers off to battle, except we waged war on each other. The virus is a deadly weapon. The mission is a political divide. We’ve spent an entire year watching elected Trump loyalists, anti-maskers, and anti vaxxers attempt to sabotage our chance for recovering.
If the GOP’s response to the Novel Coronavirus taught me anything, it’s that every one of us is expendable. A hog has more value than I do.
Then, Biden steps into office and with him, an enormous sigh of relief.
But, of course, just as positive case counts plummet, the next level of Jumanji starts: Subzero temperatures affecting 1/3 of the country while snow covers 73% of our land mass, and even more citizens are dying from the impact.
Damn, we just can’t catch a break. Pandemics are exhausting, and every single side effect is life sucking.
As we cross the threshold into the second year of COVID-19, I don’t know what the future will bring, but fuck me if it gets worse before it gets better.
If nothing else, at least now we have “end of the world” experience under our belt. Cheers to double masking.