“Coronavirus in Perspective” by Anil Shrivastava ‘Musafir’

      The Coronavirus is officially a pandemic, nevertheless, as of yesterday, March 12, 2020, only 0.006% of the world’s population perished due to this pandemic. Although one death is too many, let’s understand its intensity in the right perspective.
      The Black Plague in 1353 wiped out 20% of the world’s population. The Plague of Justinian in 542 AD killed 11% of globally; the Antonine Plague in 165 AD and Flu Pandemic in 1918 each killed 2.1% of earth’s inhabitants.
      There is no denying that the coronavirus is scary despite the statistics cited above. The peripheral consequences of the coronavirus are so devastating that the stocks are in a free fall globally; schools are closing; unemployment is rising and entertainment and recreational activities are grinding to a halt. The only silver lining is that things will revert to normal in a foreseeable future.
      While we, in the U.S, are acting as noble citizens, we must look at some culprits whose shameless and despicable acts caused this horrible pandemic to emerge and spread in the first place. The first and foremost perpetrator in the spread of Corona pandemic is the secretive, menacing and heartless government of China. Unfortunately, rather than using best practices, this outbreak in Wuhan, China was covered up. According to the Heritage Foundation, “There’s lots of open-source reporting from China, from Chinese nationals, that the doctors involved were either silenced or put in isolation, or that sort of thing, so that the word of this virus could not get out.”
      According to an insubstantial conspiracy theory, the virus was engineered in the lab by the Chinese as a bio-weapon. In another version, the virus was being studied in the lab and then escaped or leaked. I won’t be surprised at the reality of the above conspiracy theory knowing that China killed more than 1.5 million of its own citizens during the Cultural Revolution. About a million were killed later by the Gang of Four led by Mao’s wife, Jiang Qing. Many of the victims were cannibalized.
      I’ll also blame the greedy corporations of America who put all their eggs in China’s basket. Their shortsightedness has brought us on the brink of a recession. Now there are drug and auto parts shortages due to the disruption in China. The U.S. corporations should wake up and put a limit on what percentage of products should be outsourced to a single country.
      The European countries are to blame for an uncontrolled spread of the virus initially in Italy and now spreading fast to France and Germany. According to my personal experience, the problem with Europe is that it spends more time in devising procedures and processes than implementing the project. They were late in banning travel from China. They also delayed testing and, in many cases, mistreated the patients. Their handling of Coronavirus has exposed the flaws in their medical system. There is a proposal in Italy to let the elderly patients die due to scare resources. The same Europeans always gave moral lessons to America and were considered par excellence by many sycophants.
      april 20 corona 1Lastly, I blame the demagogues at home for impeding the efforts to contain the Coronavirus for their own political gains. No sooner the Coronavirus entered into the U.S. than the politicians started blaming President Trump for mishandling the situation. Previous VP, Joe Biden delivered a speech today saying, “Public fears are being compounded by a pervasive lack of trust in this president, fueled by the adversarial relationship with the truth he continues to have,”
It’s time to unite and help the nation deal with the pandemic. Demagoguery can wait for another day. I Hope the lessons learned from this pandemic will make us wiser. It should enable us to use our intellect so that we can discriminate between reality and fiction, friends and foes and the noble and ignoble.

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