echo's hemlock

United States

17 | botany enthusiast
she/they

Message to Readers

i didn't stress it enough in the piece because there simply wasn't enough room, but PLEASE AVOID GATHERINGS if possible. a pandemic is not the time for a birthday party, a banquet, or a holiday bash. please use your common sense. celebrate the holidays with your immediate family. sure, they're not as fun, but take the time to start a new tradition!

wear your g-dang mask.

if this looks familiar to you it's probably not a coincidence. shh... :)

the hard facts on the ~coronavirus~ and why america is still #winning the race

November 19, 2020

FREE WRITING

23
    so all of a sudden, it’s november. assuming your situation is anything similar to mine as a teenager in the united states, everyone was about 94% done with covid lockdowns after mid-april. 
    that’s really bad, because in the u.s, we’re staring down the biggest covid spike we’ve seen since this entire dumpster fire began in march. and here’s the hard truth, lads: it’s going to get worse. 
    it’s going to get worse IF americans continue to buck mask mandates and distancing orders. It’s true, wearing a mask and washing your hands is not going to make the coronavirus go away. but it will slow the spread, which will slow mortality rates and will allow businesses to keep some degree of functioning. 

    here’s the statistics on the coronavirus pandemic in america as of november 18th, 2020:

over 11.6 million (yes, 11,600,000) americans have been diagnosed with covid-19. 
-that’s 3.5% of the total u.s. population
-for reference, about 2% of americans are on the autism spectrum and about 4.5% americans identify as lgbt+

over 250,000 americans have died of covid-19 
-that’s a quarter of a million- not sick, but dead
-this amount of fatalities is comparable to losing the entire population of cities such as: richmond, va; buffalo, ny; reno, nv; or spokane, wa. it is just short of entire populations of cities such as: toledo, oh; madison, wi; orlando, fl; or pittsburgh, pa. 
-this amount of fatalities is just short of total american combat deaths from wwii. 
-too big of a number for you? it’s equivalent to the 9/11 terrorist attack fatalities 84 times over. it’s equivalent to filling a stadium seating 20,000 people 12.5 times. my local stadium, seating 7500, would be filled 33.3 times with american covid victims. 

    but these aren’t numbers. these are people. people, with families and friends and jobs and dreams, every one of them gone too soon. 

    let’s compare this to other countries, shall we? while many countries have seen a recent spike due to holidays and dropping temperatures, the us has had consistently high cases with a recent devastating spike. 

canada
population: 37,590,000
total cases: 311,000
total deaths: 11,186
0.83% sick
    

india
population: 1,353,000,000
total cases: 8,910,000
total deaths: 131,000
0.66% sick

the united kingdom
population: 66,650,000
total cases: 1,430,000
total deaths: 53,274
2.1% sick

japan
population: 126,500,000
total cases: 121,000
total deaths: 1895
0.096% sick

germany
population: 83,020,000
total cases: 844,000
total deaths: 13,138
1.0% sick

south korea
population: 51,640,000
total cases: 29,654
total deaths: 498
0.057% sick

australia
population: 24,990,000
total cases: 27,777
total deaths: 907
0.11% sick

to do a quick comparison: proportionally, american covid cases are much higher in frequency when compared to other large countries. and no, our numbers can't be chalked up to population density. india has a population of over a billion people; we have a population of about 330 million. currently, some of our most sparsely-populated states and cities are getting slammed by covid-19. bottom line? the american response to the pandemic has been dismal. 

and here’s some relevant spicy takes for my fellow americans: 

    if you refuse to wear a mask, think it’s ridiculous to do so, call others sheep for wearing masks, etc., you are not pro-life. let’s not pretend. Wearing a mask is specifically to keep your potential pathogens away from others- by wearing a mask, you are keeping everyone else safe! when you choose to not wear a mask, you are putting every person you encounter at risk of illness and death. what gives you the right to endanger a living, breathing human? additionally, pregnant people are considered a high-risk group, so if it’s not the grandparents, teachers, and healthcare workers that you care about, just know that you are also putting unborn children at risk. it’s not hard to acquire and/or wear a mask, and it’s really not that bad- and this is coming from someone who has to wear one for 7 hours a day. 

    It’s neither cute, funny, nor correct to use the phrase “my body, my choice” in reference to mask-wearing. while this phrase is commonly used by advocates for safe and legal abortions, it is not applicable to mask-wearing. pregnancy is a very involved medical condition that lasts much longer than the nine months it takes to carry a child, often with lasting side effects such as depression and permanent body changes. actively pregnant people can experience side effects such as intense mood swings, back and ankle pain, diabetic episodes, and hormone imbalances, just to name a few. when a person cannot physically or emotionally withstand the side effects of pregnancy or did not consent to becoming pregnant, they deserve autonomy over their body. 
    obviously, mask-wearing is not a medical condition. when you wear a mask in public, it’s rarely for more than a few hours without a break. wearing a mask does not cause adverse health effects, and no, it will not permanently scar your body. and frankly, it’s not your choice. if wearing a mask kept you safe, sure, then it’d be your choice. but wearing a mask keeps other people safe. Now, we as humans don’t have the right to force anyone to do anything. but we do have the right to deny service to and socialization with people who refuse to wear masks because they are dangers to public health

    if you have a “medical” reason for not wearing a mask, you shouldn’t be in public, and them’s the breaks. if your asthma/respiratory issues are truly so bad that wearing a mask will inhibit your breathing, then you’re already a high-risk group and should be avoiding highly social environments as much as possible. 
        -this also goes for the excuse “wearing a mask gives me anxiety!” while i will not apply my own experiences with general and social anxiety to this, as everyone processes anxiety differently, i would assume that if wearing a thin piece of cloth or paper over your mouth and nose triggers your anxiety to the point where you cannot function, your solution should not be to traipse around in public unmasked; it should be online interaction and a good therapist.

    this doesn’t have to last forever. this doesn’t have to be society-ending. now please, stay away from gatherings, put a mask on, and be quiet. your discomfort is not worth a person’s life.
*note that calculations of statistics are rough estimates

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11 Comments
  • mia_:)

    thank you for writing this!!! this message is so important and needs to be shared!


    11 months ago
  • pyrrhic

    SAY IT LOUDER FOR THE PEOPLE IN THE BACK. THANK YOU FOR THIS.


    11 months ago
  • sunny.v

    i saw someone say that wearing masks was a ploy for marxism and i could not stop laughing omg thank u for writing this!!


    11 months ago
  • SunV

    So: I'm not living in the United States, in fact I live in India, and looking at the proportions, well I didn't expect that.

    WEAR A MASK!

    WASH YOUR HANDS!

    STAY AT HOME!

    Thank you. I shall now bookmark this post so that I can keep coming back to it.


    11 months ago
  • sci-Fi

    Mhm. Yes. 100%. Accurate. True.
    THANK YOU FOR WRITING THIS.


    11 months ago
  • ~madeline~

    Every time I see a piece like this, I have to stop myself from adding a five paragraph comment about how right it is. But, I'll restrict my self. Wear a mask. Save lives. It's down to that. Masks aren't gonna hurt you, but COVID sure is gonna hurt my sick grandparents. So please help me protect them and everyone else who needs that protection. Please.


    11 months ago
  • Wisp

    I need this hung up everywhere in the United States.
    It's so true and it's so infuriating how people just discard that so carelessly. Because it matters, it matters every single freaking moment of every single day. Gosh it's true and you stressed it so well here. Thank you for writing this.
    And for the people who are anti-mask, if you didn't already get it from the piece: WEAR A MASK AND AVOID GATHERINGS


    11 months ago
  • mirkat

    thank you. my god, america is so freaking messed up. gujfisedoawsa wear the mask! <3<3<3


    11 months ago
  • sybilluv

    lol i think it's really funny when people say they're pro-life and then don't wear a mask saying that it's a matter of choice. like, you literally made the point and still missed it. it was right in front of you and you say it's a matter of personal choice, then you go saying that you're pro-life. like, come on. just say that you don't understand what being pro-life really means and that you're just anti-choice. not that hard kekeke


    11 months ago
  • woven_moth

    THANK YOU
    Honestly, I am not proud to be an American right now. It's so embarrassing. I mean, why do we have such a hard time trusting science?? Is it really a fear of communism??? Is it a result of misinformation???? It sucks because things could've been better, but they aren't, and for really annoying reasons.


    11 months ago
  • EliathRose

    Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. Shall I say it again? YES. This is SO IMPORTANT right now. I didn't intend to like anything right now with being technically off WtW, but this deserves it. It needs to be heard. So all I have to say is YESSS.


    11 months ago