An Uneasy Feeling While Perched On A Precarious Plateau

I’ll spare boring you with as many numbers as possible but this entire article is built on my continued observation of the 14-day rolling average of new COVID19 cases in America.

I am basing my concerns on data from March 6 – 20, excluding March 8th. (Missouri reported its numbers way outside the normal parameters for that day rendering the day’s numbers close to useless from a tracking and comparison perspective.) There were over three-quarters of a million new cases reported during that time period averaging 55,261 per day. A lot better than we were a few months ago; but hardly cause to sound the all clear. The trend during that time was fairly consistent with percentage declines ranging from -19% to –9%. We were mostly in the high to middle teens without any significant peeks or valleys. Looking at a graph of the numbers you would basically see a flat line which is probably what has led authorities like Dr. Fauci to call it a plateau. I agree with that analogy.

As I have previously written, other than a mutation we cannot control my concern is that too many people will think it is all over already and give back much of the progress we have made. When a curve flattens it cannot stay there forever in a dynamic situation like a pandemic. It will either spike or fall. Vaccinations will lead us to a fall but that is if we don’t change the other variables in the equation. Do I sound too mathematical for you? Let me put it plainly: we need to keep wearing masks, social distancing and frequently washing our hands. I’m not afraid of the virus as much as I fear the irresponsible actions of a significant segment of the population.

We have governors who are more concerned with politics and kissing the ring of their leader than protecting their constituents. Many states have imprudently “opened up”. Bars and beaches are overcrowded with people that will travel all over the nation in short order. These states are petri dishes for the virus and we will soon let open the “labs”.

The “reasoning” is that the threat is over so we can come out and do whatever we want to. Despite right wing rhetoric, that is far from true! The following analogy may be somewhat flawed but I think it substantially illustrates the situation. The irresponsible (and I’m being kind in my choice of verbiage again) among us are like people who read that shark attacks are down after a period where few ventured into the water to swim. They conclude that the sharks all went away never to return. Could it be that fewer people were victims of shark attacks because fewer ventured into the water? A shark can’t attack none existent prey.

For yourself, your family and your fellow man please get vaccinated as soon as you are eligible, keep wearing your mask in public, maintain social distancing practices and wash your hands frequently. We are on a plateau but the perch is, while promising, somewhat precarious at the moment.

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