Man, I’ve just about had it.
I am repeatedly hearing the argument “the cure is worse than the disease!” and to be honest, it just makes my blood boil.
It is, without question, one of the stupidest statements about COVID-19 that I have ever heard.
The “cure” as it’s derisively explained, is extreme economic hardship caused by the quarantine. Millions out of work, small businesses getting crushed and everyone on edge due to the sudden unknowns of this disease and how it impacts our future. The loss of income and all of the cascading effects of such a loss will absolutely harm nearly everyone outside of the top 5% of income earners. It’s given me nightmare reminders of the worst of the 2008 economic collapse, but on a much, much larger scale.
And that’s the thing about our economy’s failure right now. Economic hardship is not a new experience for a lot of us. I was born in the 60’s. As a child, we lived through the Viet-Nam war, Watergate, recessions, gas lines, the shift from single earner households to families needing dual-incomes to survive. I was an original latch key kid.
I lived through Reagan’s union busting that threw my dad out of work for nearly 2 years when I was in high school. I’ve lived through numerous recessions. I lived through a divorce. I was financially destroyed by the 2008 collapse that closed my business and destroyed millions of families.
Here’s the thing though. I lived through all of those economic hardships and bounced back each time. Bloodied, broken, hurt and frightened, but I’m still here. I’m still trying to be a decent friend, father, sibling, person. I volunteer to help people with mental illnesses, I give time to almost anyone who needs it. I try to make my world and community better by being a decent human being.
“The cure is worse than the disease”
I can’t hardly type that without feeling rage.
I’ve talked about the “cure”, now let’s talk about the disease.
It spreads quickly and silently with the average time of infection being 1-2 weeks before people know they’re sick. They are infectious nearly that entire time.
About 80% of people who get it experience no real symptoms or nothing worse than a minor cold.
It’s those other 20% that you don’t want to join.
From destroying your lungs to causing strokes & random blood clots, it can be devastating to a body. Time from onset of symptoms to death can be as little as 24 hours for people with other health challenges. The gentleman who was Oregon’s first case of community transmission was just released from the hospital… two months after entering. His next stop is rehab for an unknown amount of time. He’s 46. His experience is not unique. He survived so he doesn’t add to the state’s mortality count.
Remember… hospitalization will be the experience of 20% of the people who get it. Of that 20%, an unknown percentage will die.
Which brings us to another issue. We have one hell of a hard time deciding what the mortality rate of this thing even is. In Italy, it’s around 14.8%. Other countries are anywhere from 0.5% to 12% all depending on how that country tries to control the illness. Look at how this thing burns through retirement communities; 20-40% mortality rates for the elderly are not unusual.
Areas that do nothing to control it experience higher infections and mortality rates- it’s really pretty straight forward. No quarantine, no masks, no social distancing, and your numbers can skyrocket. When it explodes, your hospitals get overwhelmed, your healthcare workers catch it and die and doctors and nurses have to start deciding who gets life saving care and who is allowed to die because there just aren’t enough resources.
When I hear “the cure is worse than the disease”, all I can think is that I personally have bounced back from half a dozen or more serious, destructive periods of economic hardship yet I’ve never met a single person who bounced back from death.
Stating that the “cure is worse than the disease” in regards to COVID-19 is simply one of the most Sociopathic sentiments I have ever heard.
Economic hardship, no matter how bad, is never worse than death if you value just a single human life.