Deep Dive 2020: Coronavirus in America (Centerpiece)

Deep+Dive+2020%3A+Coronavirus+in+America+%28Centerpiece%29

A few months ago, the coronavirus was just merely a meme within the United States and was taken lightly by almost all Americans. Now, it has crippled the American economy, closed schools, halted normal activities, separated friends and family, and has flooded our hospitals and health care sector. A new virtual world has been unleashed upon all of us in order to work, complete schooling, communicate and to talk to friends (if you invested in Zoom before this, you are a genius.) It’s almost as if life has taken a month and a half pause for typical Americans, especially those who live on the coasts. Unfortunately, this pause has not been sunshines and rainbows in the slightest, rather, it has proven to be a deadly economic nightmare full of harsh realities that have left Americans desperately searching for answers.

 

The consequences of this pandemic are truly astounding as unemployment has reached highs near the Depression-era 1930s. The $2.2 trillion stimulus package for the estimated 25-30 million newly unemployed workers is set to put our country is even more debt and instability in the future. Certain industries such as bars and restaurants have been hit extremely hard, and even when the coronavirus is “over,” which is the wrong word to describe it, they will have a very hard time making profit or even opening up again at all. Pressing issues in our country such as border safety, gun control, foreign relations, and commerce have taken a major back seat in our priorities which is an unsettling thought to many people. Regardless of what statistic or aspect of life that has changed, decades later we will be looking back at this moment in history and be deeming it incredibly significant.

 

With approximately 1,177,618 confirmed cases and 68,437 deaths recorded to date (many more not recorded), the United States has been hit the hardest by COVID-19 than any other country. I say this with some hesitation because there is much legitimate speculation that China overwhelmingly under-reported cases and deaths. Nonetheless, this has by far been the biggest domestic crisis within the United States since at least 9/11. Historically, an event like this can either break a country and hurt it in the short and long term or bring people together to such an extent to where long-lasting unity will uplift a country in the future. Let’s hope the latter is the end result of this pandemic but unfortunately, I have my doubts.

 

For the most part, a non-political crisis like this would bring a country together to fight against something greater than ourselves but as frustrating as it is to say, that has not been the case for the most part. President Donald Trump has been under extreme pressure and criticism ever since the pandemic hit the United States even though this is arguably one of the most difficult situations to manage in recent U.S. history. The question of opening the country back up in stages at the potential expense of lives is one of the hardest realities a U.S. President has ever faced. Everything he has done and will do will be criticized by the media no matter what the result is, positive or negative, which has been incredibly frustrating to watch as a mostly non-political and practical person myself. In closing, I am trying to say that no matter what president was in office at this current time, they would have an extremely difficult time properly handling this pandemic without any consequences in decisions or planning.

 

This time period is truly uncharted territory for people living in this country today, as we have never faced a time where “I don’t know,” or “hopefully by then” has become the best answer to predict the outcome of such a widely impactful event. People like Dr. Anthony Fauci try their best to give the American people the most accurate and historically backed answers, but unfortunately, we have come to a point where most Americans have little trust in what we are being told. That is why so many people are being very careful about their safety by taking suggested measures such as wearing masks outdoors, not seeing older family members, or maintaining a six-foot distance from others at all times.

 

As ridiculous as it may seem for most people, these simple small actions can be critical in helping to slow down the spreading of the virus and ensure that we don’t see another spike in cases (which would be another disaster in itself.) Americans desperately need to get back to work, as our economy has taken historical dips from once extremely high marks. President Trump and governors across the country are working hard to plan re-openings of critical commerce. Again, we all hope this goes smoothly with limited reoccurrences in cases. A successful result of reopenings in states such as Georgia and Florida would be a great first step in a positive direction.

 

Individually, we can all do our part in speeding up the process by performing these measures, but as a whole country, we must comply with our leaders in the medical industry and in government to help prevent this country from further calamity. There will always be something positive that comes out of such a sweeping event like this such as future preparedness for another crisis or further innovation in the medical field. Like America always has, we will get over this hardship, but it comes down to everyone playing their role in managing our great nation over the course of the next several months.

 

Here is a video reporting on the issue of states re-opening businesses and other aspects of life: