CORRECTS TO CULVER CITY, INSTEAD OF LOS ANGELES An employee stands at the entrance to a guns shop Tuesday, March 24, 2020, in Culver City, Calif. Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said he would like to see gun shops shut down. “We will be closing them, they are not an essential function,” Villanueva said. Adding guns to households where more people are at home during a crisis increases the risk that someone will be shot, he said. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
I’m not going to make many friends with this article.
I’m having trouble wrapping my head around this quarantine and the more people tell me it’s about saving lives the angrier I get about it.
Before you take to the comments to elect me the first guy to die from drawing and quartering in generations, allow me to tell you that I understand the need to make sure that we keep the virus from spreading so that we can keep the most at-risk members of our society safe. I want them safe as well.
In fact, I don’t know anybody who wants anybody to die from the virus except the angry leftists who have lashed out at right-leaning pundits for sounding the alarm that we can’t do this forever lest our nation crumble around us.
(READ: Britt Hume Sends Left Into Wishing Him Dead After Saying He’d Be Willing to Risk Death to Help the Economy)
The thing is, our hiding in our homes and waiting for this dark cloud to pass is inviting in something far worse. We’re plunging our economy into the toilet. Nay, past the toilet into the sewers below, and our country’s future is being carried out to sea as we speak. As it continues to free fall and we continue to let it, I can’t help but wonder if it would be better just to risk the virus.
The current “everybody knows this” take on the virus is that it has a much higher death rate than influenza, which killed 23,000 people in America alone this season according to the CDC. At this time, COVID-19 has killed around 51,000 around the globe, though that number may actually be higher as China is fudging its own numbers.
(Report: Intelligence Officials Confirm China Hid the Extent of the Viral Outbreak)
According to the New York Times, the seasonal flu’s death rate sits at 0.1 percent. COVID-19’s death rate is currently unknown. The numbers are all over the place and differ from region to region. China is reporting death rates ranging from 0.4 percent, all the way up to eight percent depending on which area you look at. Italy’s death rate is somewhere around five percent. South Korea’s 0.6 percent.
There are a ton of factors that would cause the death rate to rise and fall, such as the country’s healthcare system and preparedness, yet one of the big key deciders on what that country’s death rate is seems to be the amount of testing it does.
As Andrew McCarthy writes at National Review, a very, very small fraction of Americans have been tested for the virus, but of that fraction, only a slim fraction have died:
The total number of tests administered (positive and negative) is 432,655. That is a bare fraction of our total U.S. population.
Some perspective, then: Out of 330 million Americans, fewer than 1 percent have been tested. While testing should have been more widely available early on, it is increasingly available now, and of those who have been tested, the vast majority (85 percent) have tested negative. COVID-19 is infectious and can be deadly, so it cannot responsibly be sloughed off. That said, the percentage of Americans who’ve gotten it is tiny, and it has been fatal for just a thin fraction of those.
The United States has the best healthcare system in the world despite what the socialists and Democratic politicians thirsty for votes will tell you. I’m willing to bet that if each of us did a test, the fatality rate in the U.S. would put South Korea to shame. With chloroquine now in the mix, proving to be effective at helping fight the worst aspects of the virus, the battle against COVID-19 gets even easier.
All this is to say that I’m not sure this virus is worth hiding away in our homes for. I’m not sure that cowering behind our walls in what is likely a vain attempt to halt the spread of a virus — we’re now being told it could make a resurgence in the fall — that we’re likely not going to die from thanks to our healthcare system putting the odds in our favor is worth it. I’m definitely not sure throwing our country away, ruining everything we built, and crushing the futures of our children is wise.
I realize that we didn’t know a lot about this virus and the initial reports were incredibly frightening which justified this quarantine, but as time goes on and more information comes out and the picture becomes clearer, this quarantine is looking more and more foolish. I feel like I’m watching this country drown in fear that really only comes up waist deep. We’d find that out if we just bravely stood up and walked around.
Understand that I don’t want anyone to die, and I still think that our most vulnerable Americans should be kept safe. However, there is a severity that goes far beyond the virus. Poor countries are rarely healthy ones. An economy that isn’t circulating wealth has a hard time producing what it needs to keep the people safe and well-tended. What’s more, countries that can’t provide jobs are ones that tend to see mass amounts of dependence on the state, overburdening it — unemployment filings have now reached 6.6 million — as well as increased reports of depression and suicide.
In fact, suicides and/or threats of suicides are already seeing spikes as I write this.
(READ: Suicide Attempts and Calls to Hotlines Spike as Economy Free Falls)
No matter how we slice this, people are going to die. They’ll either die from COVID, or they’ll die from another sickness down the line due to their poverty, or they’ll die from suicide. Not to sound like Venessa Hudgens here, but she was right about one thing in her under-the-influence Instagram post: Death is inevitable.
If we’re doing this to prevent as many deaths as possible then, as Dennis Prager recently said, we have to stop everything. We must stop traveling on roadways, we must stop plugging electrical cords into walls, stop going swimming, stop using power tools, and stop going out to restaurants. All of these things can result in deaths, especially driving in our cars. Hell, you have a 1 in 6 chance of dying of heart disease, yet I don’t see the nation mandating gym memberships and people happily shrugging and agreeing to it with little questioning attached.
You should watch that Prager clip, by the way.
It makes no sense.@DennisPrager discusses why the response to the #COVID19Pandemic is threatening to put the U.S. into an economic depression. pic.twitter.com/jQwvp7rNht
— PragerU (@prageru) April 2, 2020
That we’re going to have to stop hiding and leave our homes to get our economy back into shape is inevitable. We can’t hide away forever. At some point, we’re going to have to step outside our homes, breathe in the air, and possibly contract a virus or two in the process. At this point, that is better than staying inside, cowering, and letting the country fall to pieces so you can feel “safe.”
You’re not safe. You’ve never been safe. You gambled with your life every day you so much as got out of bed, picked up a fork, or pumped gas into your car.
Fact is, you’re going to die no matter what you do. The question is, do you want to die hiding in the dark, or do you want to step out into the light and help repair the greatest society man has ever produced?
Rest assured, we’ll be forced to answer that question very soon.