By Austin Lin
COVID-19 continues to run rampant with no signs of stopping. It has been 6 months since social distancing was put into place in response to the widespread outbreak of COVID-19, so who doesn’t miss their friends? However, missing your friends isn’t a good enough reason to jeopardize the wellbeing of those around you. By no means am I reasoning that hanging out with your friends at a safe distance, with protective face masks, and in small groups is wrong. Nonetheless, practicing safe habits during the pandemic is the best way to minimize the chances of contracting and spreading COVID-19. Trying your best to only go out for essential tasks such as work, grocery shopping, or any other personal needs is the best method to keep yourself and others safe. Time and time again I see my peers hanging out in large groups, paying no mind to the pandemic.
While I cannot speak for everyone, I care dearly for my family and friends. I would never intentionally put them at risk by being irrational and irresponsible. For those who are blind to the obvious status of the pandemic at hand, is it really that hard to take precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19? I am curious to know what the thought process behind these actions is. Why are collectivist nations recovering at a much faster rate than the United States? Many students I know are incredibly knowledgeable and kind. They help educate others and contribute to the community around them. So for the community they love so much, where is the same care when it comes to COVID-19? The lack of sufficient federal aid is resulting in further damage to the recession and disproportionately harms those low-income individuals and people of color who are impacted by COVID-19. Moreover, if COVID-19 continues there would be an increase in layoffs and a decrease in health care services. The lack of federal aid would result in a significant drop in tax revenue, leading to drawbacks in education, healthcare, and other important services. Therefore, these expenses will be unable to be fulfilled and continue to damage the state for several years. So I respectfully ask, can you simultaneously disregard COVID-19 guidelines and advocate for our community? Isn’t it a little hypocritical?
If we can buckle down for just a few weeks, COVID-19 will be practically gone. There really isn’t much more to it. By self-isolating for just a few more weeks students could return to school and resume sports and other activities. Moreover, we can prevent the potential deaths of those around us. Without a doubt I understand those who miss their friends and want to hang out; I am a part of that group as well. Just remember to take into consideration the current state of the pandemic, follow precautions, stay in small groups, and minimize the time and amount you hang out. Stay safe and stay smart.