The Cost Of Bad Behavior

The data for this article is based on the 14-day rolling average of new coronavirus infections in America. The conclusion comes from my ability to do critical thinking. The warning is prudent but it’s probably a lot like the clergyperson who preaches to the assembled faithful in the house of worship about service attendance. Out of a sense of moral obligation I’m going to do it anyway.

During the period March 21 – 27 inclusive the average daily new infections was just under 62,000. A week ago we were in the 55,000 range. We are still in a relative plateau but the last three days all reflected increases with the 27th at +11%. In short, we are beginning to move in the wrong direction. This is without even considering that about three weeks ago we were in the minus mid-twenties range.

Considering that a substantial portion of the population has been vaccinated those numbers are worse than they appear at first glance. That begs the question: Why is this happening? My answer is: primarily bad behavior.

People are acting like it is all over when in reality it is more like the eye of the hurricane is passing over us. Except in this case we have some control over how bad the “backside of the hurricane” is. Too many among us are blowing the opportunity for all of us.

At this point demand is still outstripping vaccine supply but that may not last too much longer. There is some hesitancy about getting vaccinated that always exists (a small portion of it for legitimate medical reason(s)); in reality that is basically minor. Add to that the anti-vaxxers; again, fortunately a very small number. Those two groups combined shouldn’t be large enough to prevent America from reaching community immunity. The problem is those who have subjected themselves to the plethora of demonstrably false right wing mythology. That is a tough nut to crack for no person is as blind as they who refuse to see.

In the immediate the problem is the people who are now going about their lives like the virus either doesn’t exist or the threat is over; neither of which is true. The prime example (and we have yet to see the true cost of it) are the spring break people. This is not limited to college students – many “adults” are going on vacations cabin fever getting the best of them. To them I say, I hope you enjoy your vacation because it may well be your last one.

The college kids I can understand. They have that youthful feeling of invincibility – many of my poor decision are caused by the senior citizen version of it. The “adults” is another matter. They are not only endangering their lives but too often the lives of their children who they drag along. Add to that all the people they come in contact with both on vacation and when they get back home. Unlike many others (and our laws) I believe you have the right to commit suicide, but not to commit murder or manslaughter.

I sound like a broken record but the pandemic is serious. The virus is mutating because that is what viruses do. We are in a race to vaccinate enough people before one of these mutations gets ahead of medical science and we are back to square one. We can’t control the mutations but we can control ourselves. I’m going to sound like a conservative in the concluding sentence; but it is your personal responsibility to act in a morally responsible manner by getting vaccinated, wearing a mask, practicing social distancing (including avoiding crowds) and unnecessary exposure along with frequent hand washing.

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