By Editor in Chief
Posted Mar 14, 2020 12:27 AM
COVID-19 is the name given to the Coronavirus by the World Health Organization (WHO). It can be traced to Wuhan, China, where 266 people contracted the virus. The first case was detected on November 17, 2019, but the Chinese government tried to conceal its outbreak. So, it could’ve been around way before then.
Knowing that viruses mutate, COVID-19 is believed to be a mutation of SARS and MERS. It has been deemed a pandemic because of its rapid spread around the world. Johns Hopkins University Map maintains up to date info on COVID-19, such as confirmed cases and the death toll.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), influenza has killed more people than COVID-19. Yet, COVID-19 seems to have everybody shaking, even to the point that it has been declared a National State of Emergency. Billionaires like Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, and others have pledged billions on finding a cure. President Trump is advocating for $50 billion in federal resources to fight this deadly virus.
People are beginning to panic, as supermarket shelves are being emptied faster than they are filled. Universities have shut down and ordered classes to be online. Public schools are following suit. Travel bans on incoming flights from Europe have been put in place. Stores are shutting their doors because of government mandates. The stock market plunged, and the interdependence of the world’s economy is on shaky ground. Countries are closing their borders in hope of containing the virus.
Is history repeating itself? It certainly coincides with the 1918 Spanish Influenza Pandemic, when schools shut down, people wore masks, and restrictions were placed on business.
According to Wikipedia.Org., The Spanish Flu, which stemmed from an H1N1 Virus, lasted from “January 1918 to December 1920, it infected 500 million people – about a quarter of the world’s population at the time. The death toll is estimated to have been anywhere from 17 million to 50 million, and possibly as high as 100 million, making it one of the deadliest pandemics in human history.”
Will COVID-19 be as catastrophic as The Spanish Flu of 1918? Let’s hope not. But the best rule of thumb is not to take chances. Wear a mask, gloves, and social distance. Keeping in close communication with your State Representative wouldn’t hurt, either. It helps to better understand how one’s civil liberty is and will be affected by COVID-19. It is important to maintain a voice … to work together so we can resume our lives to some kind of normality. Let’s hope that a cure is found fairly quickly and that we can return to the way we were.
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Experts Discuss COVID-19
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Posted Mar 21, 2020 10:43 PM
Living in the Wake of COVID-19
By Editor in Chief
Posted April 9, 2020 8:22 PM
Since posting “The Scare,” a lot has changed. The death toll has risen. Click to view Johns Hopkins University Map. The world went into lockdown to curb the spread of the virus. Some countries have enacted fines for those being out pass curfew and not in quarantine. Yuliya Talmazan for NBC News reports the following:
- Saudi Arabia enacted a three-week curfew. Violators are fined $2,777 (10,000 Riyals) for the first infraction and the amount will double for the second and jail time of 20 days for the third.
- Italy, badly hit by the Coronavirus, is fining violators $222 (€206), and the fine can get stiffer to $3,246 (€3000).
- Israel is on partial lockdown, and if quarantine is broken, violators face a fine of $1,365 ( 5,000 shekels).
- France has placed a fine starting at $41 (€38) and can go as high as $1,618 (€1,500) for repeat offenders.
Protective suits for the general public have not been issued, but people are required to wear a mask and gloves when shopping for essentials, such as food. In-home testing kits are still not available. Social distancing when out in public is the norm. Crime has been down since people are in lockdown and afraid of contracting the virus.
Hospitals are overwhelmed as there aren’t enough beds, protective gear, and ventilators. New York City has become the epicenter of the virus. Inequality is showing its face, as more underprivileged people are dying because of no medical insurance and preexisting conditions, such as diabetes and hypertension, which makes them vulnerable.
Major chain stores are facing bankruptcy. Pamela Danziger, Senior Contributor for Forbes has gleaned a list of major retailers whose credit rating has gone down.
- Capri Holdings (Michael Kors, Versace, Jimmy Choo)
- J.C. Penney
- Levi Strauss
- Signet (Kay Jewelers, Zales, Jared, Piercing Pagoda)
- Tapestry (Coach, Kate Spade, Stuart Weitzman)
Russia was testing its boundaries in flying over Alaskan airspace. CNN reports that “US F-22 stealth jets and Canadian CF-18 fighters intercepted two Russian reconnaissance aircraft while they were flying off the Alaskan coast on Monday [March 9th], according to North America Aerospace Defense Command.”
President Trump’s National State of Emergency stimulus package, the biggest in history, went from 50 billion to 2 trillion. Americans who filed their taxes electronically should be seeing a payout from April 9th to April 14th of 2020. For those who did not file electronically, checks should be coming after April 24th.
The major hoopla now is the reopening of the economy. President Trump wants to reopen the economy on May 1, 2020, but no definitive plan is in order. Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, fears it’s too soon because it may cause another major relapse. Bill Gates speaks out, stating that the economy should not be reopened because the death toll will rise even further and more will be infected.
Dr. Fauci’s worst nightmare came true–COVID cases had spiked. Bill Gates’ cautious approach to not open the economy so soon seemed to have been blown to the wind, as President Trump didn’t take heed. Naturally, the curve didn’t flatten. The Washington Post reports on 23 June 2020 that seven states (Arizona, Arkansas, California, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas) all saw a resurgent in more hospital cases than at the beginning of the pandemic.
Long Time No Share
It’s been a while since I’ve posted. I got caught in a COVID slump. Lockdown got to me. The inability to travel made me feel constrained. I could no longer just pick up and go … spread my wings, so to speak. I couldn’t just pop over a friend’s house or throw dinner parties. I could no longer get my weekly massage, monthly facial or pedicure. It was home-market-home. Life became terribly mundane to the point where I just wanted to scream. My mind would drift to better days gone by. How things were; how they used to be. How I travelled around the world … met so many fascinating people. And here I stood, glaring out the window.
Even though I was in lockdown with my daughter and brother, a sense of loneliness still prevailed. It was a yearning for human connection … human touch. I went through the motion of living, but that’s all it was. I went along my day doing my chores–cooking, cleaning, home- schooling, and seeking trades people to work on my historic home. Yet, there was still a yearning for things to be the way they were. I knew in my deepest of heart that COVID-19 was the catalyst for change in every aspect of the word, that is, politically, economically … a real world changer.
In U.S. politics, so much has played out. The Black Lives Matter Protest broke out throughout the country, seeking justice for the police brutality against George Floyd. Apparently, a Minneapolis store clerk alleged that George Floyd a 47-year-old African-American man handed her a counterfeit $20 bill.
While arresting George Floyd, police officer, Derek Chauvin, disregarded Floyd’s plea of “I can’t breathe,” as he continued to press his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes. Floyd died on 25 May 2020, and Chauvin was convicted of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Chauvin has now requested a new trail.
As a result of “Black Lives Matter,” other nations showed solidarity. In Pretoria, South Africa, Economic Freedom Fighters protested in front of the U.S. Embassy to support the Black Lives Matter Movement against police brutality.
In the United Kingdom, voices of racism echoed out as protesters took to the streets of Central London. Aima, who is 18-years-old, believes her generation is the one “to bring real change” and that their voices of racial inequality are not being heard by government, according to BBC News, Michael Baggs (25 August 2020).
Adding fuel to the flame, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer brushes off the protestors’ claim of racial inequality by saying that Black Lives Matter was a “moment not a movement,” according to BBC News, Michael Baggs.
Little does Sir Keir Starmer know that his statement only resonates racial inequality. To make matters worse, Prime Minister Boris Johnson appears to be in never-never land when he says, “UK is not a racist country” and uses the word ‘thuggery’ to depict protesters.
According to The Diplomat, China took a different stance on Black Lives Matter. Rather than show solidarity, China used Black Lives Matter to ridicule the United States and to bring forward its hypocrisy. This is evident when the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Hua Chunying, blurted out “I can’t breathe” to former U.S. State Department Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus.
China is on a mission to surpass the U.S. in everything, that is, economically, militarily, and scientifically. So, it is angered that the U.S. and other NATO forces are standing in its way by presenting China’s injustice of the Uighurs. China’s action against the Uighurs is being dubbed as genocide. Moreover, Donald Trump put a hurting on China with his ally-alienating policies within NATO and also with his trade tariffs, which really pissed China off.
What China fails to realize is that before it can ever reach global superpower status, it must first renounce communism. Thus, any propaganda campaign from China on hypocrisy will not affect the U.S. in the least because the difference is that the U.S. rises above and takes steps to rectify its wrongs. In contrast, China never admits its wrongs because they are too afraid to lose face, and spends too much time concealing its wrongs, while it continues to do so.