Sunday, June 28, 2020

SARS-CoV-2 and Social Care

Globally, SARS-CoV-2 has never slowed down.

In regionally specific areas, where decisive action has been taken by wise human agency, cases have dropped.  And yet, in other areas where poor human decisions and failures of action are a reality, cases of infected persons and COVID-19 have risen.

It is scary.

And, it is foolish.

For any virus in any time in human history, we know as a matter of fact that diminishing contact(s) decreases the spread of the virus.  Period.

While the "novel" (new) coronavirus that is SARS-CoV-2 is presenting new challenges to understand it's unique spread and impact, we have known that limiting contact with the virus decreases the viral spread.  Fact.

  • I am deeply troubled by persons pushing the boundaries (or ignoring all-together) social distancing.
  • I am deeply troubled by persons engaging in active gatherings from beaches to rallies to congregational events.
  • I am deeply troubled by protests to wear masks and/or a failure to graciously wear masks in any public place.

It's impossible for me to discern how persons think about their lives and their "freedoms" or "rights" in any precise way.  It does seem evident far too many persons in the United States of America are not amenable to simple calculations of reasonable discernment.

I've tried to think of analogies to understand the situation.  The "best" one I can come up with is something akin to the "water parks" where kids play - the "splash-pad" variety.  These are the water parks that various have "sprays" or "shooting water" that come on with variable power and random "dumps" from slowly filling bucket perched on high.

  • A person who goes nowhere near the splash-pad is guaranteed not to get wet from the splash-pad.
  • A person near the splash-pad though not on the "concrete" footing itself, may or may not get wet - depending on many variables including wind, sun and temperature and the persons proximity of 5 feet from the pad to 50 feet or 150 feet from the pad.  
  • A person near the splash-pad,  fully contained within a vehicle with the doors and windows closed or perhaps within an outdoor sealed camping tent, may be *nearly* subject to getting wet and yet, would be untouched personally by the moisture.
  • And yet, a person who tries to strategically criss-cross the splash-pad by not getting wet - can not do it.  They may only get minimally wet compared to a person standing under a bucket - and yet, that person *will* get wet.  It is impossible to cross the splash-pad and not get at least minimally wet.
  • And, of course, persons actively playing on the splash-pad will get soaking wet.

We can avoid the impact of SARS-CoV-2 by limiting the frequency
and proximity of all of our social contacts.

We can avoid the impact of SARS-CoV-2 by "suiting up" (masking) for it's 
spread when we are in the presence of any other persons.

Separate from the fact that some people die from COVID-19.  We still have no long-term awareness of how contracting the SARS-CoV-2 virus will impact persons in a year, or two or five or ten years.  This is a *new* virus and it's long-term impact on organs and bodies is unknown.

I wish we cared more about our lives and the lives of one another - such that we all acted more cautiously and carefully now.

And, I wish I lived in New Zealand. Not only are the two "islands" of New Zealand gorgeous for geography and topography - and not only are they a diverse group of many persons from various regions -  their social care and public, shared, scientifically informed, and politically shaped response to SARS-CoV-2 is a model of social care.

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