This quote is especially meaningful on this Monday. Facing this looming COVID-19 pandemic can feel overwhelming! As Americans, we like our freedoms. We love it. We love doing what we want to do, when we want to do it and with whoever we want to do it with. All of the time. This time, however, enjoying those freedoms could cost us more than we are willing to pay!
Seeing the pandemic explode on our nation is scary stuff. People are sick, they are dying, and some are obstinately refusing self-quarantine or isolate as a preventative measure. This is serious business, people. Quarantine and isolation aren’t just for those who are sick. In addition to sick people needing to quarantine, it’s also for those who might become sick. It isn’t just for people who have traveled to another country recently. It isn’t just for people who can easily handle the potential boredom of isolation. It is for every single one of us. At least for the next few weeks.
Let me break it down simply. Experts spent the majority of Friday (March 13, 2020) telling us that the projected rate of infection will quickly overwhelm our medical system. As a country, we can’t handle the sheer numbers of sick people. We don’t have the hospital beds for everyone who would need them and we don’t have ventilators for everyone who would need one. That means a lot of people would die. Not go home and be miserably sick. DIE. Mothers, Fathers, sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, aunts and uncles. Friends and lovers. Husbands and wives. DEAD.
And it can be prevented, but we all have to do our parts to prevent it. Each and every one of us. Even you, who go on your morning run through the city every single day… use a treadmill for a few weeks. Even you, who feel the need for social contact to keep your sanity… it will be hard, but go online to socialize. Even you, who need to run your business… do everything you can online from home – Zoom/Duo/Snapchat/Skype your meetings and tunnel to your work computer.
THIS IS SOMETHING THAT WE CAN DO. Yeah, it will suck. But the alternative is a disaster. Disaster will suck so much more. And just think… if you are the one who thought “it doesn’t apply to me, what damage could I cause?”, just remember: at the time of this writing, over 40 people are dead in Washington State and that area’s entire outbreak came from ONE PERSON. A SINGLE PERSON. 40+ dead. Is it worth it? No, it is not.
It might sound harsh, but that’s the point when I say: if you are the one who doesn’t quarantine/isolate and spreads COVID-19, leading to more sickness and deaths: that is blood on your hands. I hope you can live with it because I can’t. If you are Christian, how will you answer to that sin when judgment comes? How many lives were lost because of you? How many could you have saved if you were a little less selfish? How many orphans were created because you just had to go out for a little social time or because you just couldn’t put off that important meeting? Was the meeting more important than their lives? Seriously.
Look at Italy. This is the real world and we must be good global and community citizens. Stay inside. Wash your hands. Sanitize. Clean your surfaces. Help your kids wash effectively. Don’t hoard supplies because while you do need those supplies, your neighbors do as well. Be a good person. Stay inside. Take a staycation, have a week of home spa days, enjoy the extra family time, binge that TV show you wanted to catch up on. Do whatever it takes to keep your sanity while we, as a country, work through this difficult time.
Yeah, most people don’t like change. It’s hard. It sucks. But the alternative sucks so much more. We have to adapt or die. You probably think I’m overreacting but I’m really not. If this country’s health system totally collapses and we have hundreds of thousands of deaths due to this virus, nothing will ever be the same again. NOTHING.
So, I implore you. I appeal to your better nature. I downright beg you. STAY INSIDE. The alternative is disaster.