The Mighty Logo

I’m Scared People Aren’t Taking COVID-19 Seriously Anymore

The most helpful emails in health
Browse our free newsletters

Editor's Note

This story reflects an individual’s experience and is not an endorsement from The Mighty. We believe in sharing a variety of perspectives from our community.

Here I am, staying at home for my fellow humans, and they are just running around the country without a care in the world.

I do not understand it. We have been told by scientists that the best thing we can do to slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) is to stop moving about our communities. My state, Georgia, is fourth in the nation for COVID-19 cases and our deaths are racking up daily. My governor is clearly not guided by science but instead by political forces . Even in the face of growing case counts, he is pushing back and saying there is nothing to see here.

As a Black woman, I am scared. I have high blood pressure, and I am pre-diabetic and overweight. I cannot afford to get sick; besides the fact that it might kill me, it also could bankrupt me. I am one of the “lucky” ones who can stay home most of the time. But what about the stay-at-home orders? What happened to flattening the curve?

Our statewide stay-at-home order was lifted at the end of April shortly after it began. We have no statewide mask mandate even though our local governments have now been allowed to impose them by the governor. The governor went so far as to sue a Black female mayor over this; he has since backed down.

At the time of writing this, the governor has not made a statewide mandate with schools. Some are opening to disastrous results. Whole schools have been closed back down days after opening. Some of the metro Atlanta area school districts are having all-virtual classrooms and are struggling to get WiFi and computer access to all students. We have uncontrolled community spread and we are headed for an even bigger disaster.

We had gotten to 50% mobility (social distancing) during the stay-at-home orders in April, but now we are at 84% typical mobility as far as our social distancing is concerned. We are not staying at home. And we are expected to be at 100% mobility sooner rather than later. Nothing is stopping us from going over the cliff.

This is indicative of complete and utter abdication of responsibility by our leaders. It seems like they have given up and are watching our people die by the thousands. The only thing that stands between us and death is leadership based on science. And all my leaders are thinking about is reelection and appealing to their base.

“The [Georgia] governor has demonstrated a willingness to defer to the president instead of his own constituents, sacrifice Georgians’ safety to snipe at his political foes, and shore up his own power at the expense of democracy. In short, Kemp is a wannabe authoritarian, and millions of Georgians have suffered as a result, with no end in sight.” — Amanda Mull, The Atlantic.

I passionately believe this approach will backfire on them.

My 59-year-old family member was in the hospital with COVID-19 and had pneumonia. She was on a breathing tube for one week. They gave her plasma, and she responded positively and is now home. Her job let her work from home, but her husband’s job did not and his job had an outbreak. They are thinking that was her source of the virus. Also, however, she was out shopping all the time, visiting with her 83-year-old mother and her friends and siblings. She even went out and got a tattoo. The week before she was hospitalized, she put a picture on Facebook posing with her mother and all her siblings at a family gathering. I have already lost a 65-year-old family member to this virus. I do not want to lose anyone else.

I just do not know how many more of us must die.

I sit at home and pray for my fellow humans to be protected from this killer, debilitating virus. So, I need my fellow community members to do the right thing since our leaders won’t; we must put a stop to this. Wear your mask correctly if you are able, socially distance, limit gatherings, wash your hands, and stay home when you can. This is not the time to be at the mall or the movie theater or visiting grandma. You should be home, hugging your family member who is not sick. You should be calling your local, state and national leaders demanding them to do something.

We can come out of the other side of this if we all just work together and care about our fellow human.

Maya Lorde

Photo by Gayatri Malhotra on Unsplash

Originally published: September 4, 2020
Want more of The Mighty?
You can find even more stories on our Home page. There, you’ll also find thoughts and questions by our community.
Take Me Home