Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Coronavirus Update 9-21-21: Covid-19 has now killed as many Americans as the Spanish flu

Covid-19 just passed a grim, sad, and preventable milestone. It has killed as many Americans, 675,000, as the last pandemic we suffered, the 1917 Spanish flu. That's more than 226 9/11s.

What makes Covid-19 so much worse than the 1917 pandemic is that we know so much more and we should have been able to end this long before reaching this point.

More than anything else, we have a virus-slowing, life-saving vaccine that 45 percent of the country has failed to fully take. Before the vaccine, we had face masks that a similar percentage of our country railed and rallied against. 

As a nation, many too many of us have chosen politics over science, and fiction over reality. As a result, too many have died, and more have fallen ill and suffered.

We are at war against Covid. Wars demand sacrifice and selflessness, not self-centeredness and selfishness. Somewhere along the line, we lost our empathy and compassion. We stopped caring for others, more concerned about ideals of personal liberty (which, by the way, stops when your exercise of liberty can sicken me with a deadly virus), calling others sheep (and worse), and glorifying Nazi symbols. We should all be outraged that parents all over the country are throwing up Nazi salutes during school board meetings to protest mask rules and vaccine mandates, and yet it's being normalized (and in some places, glorified). I am ashamed of our country. I know that those who lived through the Great Depression and World War II, who greatly sacrificed for the collective good, would be as well. 

Our country is in a bad, bad place, and it's getting worse by the day. I don't have any solutions. But I am here to offer my condolences to the families of our 675,000 (and rising) fallen Americans. Our nation failed them. Many of their losses were preventable, and that so many of us seem not to care offers me little hope for our future.

Before I leave you today, a programming note. Tomorrow (Wed., 9/22) from 9 - 10am I'll be live on WCPN's The Sound of Ideas discussing employer-mandated vaccines. You can listen online here.

* Photo by Eyasu Etsub on Unsplash