More Infectious Than the Coronavirus Is the Panic

A staff member blocks the view as a person is taken by a stretcher to a waiting ambulance from a nursing facility where more than 50 people are sick and being tested for the COVID-19 virus, Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020, in Kirkland, Wash. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

I just want you to sit and watch this for a second.

Here is Drew Pinsky (a.k.a. Dr. Drew) talking about the Coronavirus. Well, he’s not actually talking too much about the Coronavirus here, he’s talking more about our reaction to it. Pinsky points out that we currently have a media that is doing its level best to scare us on the Wuhan Virus, but in reality, there’s more to worry about from our old foe, the common flu, than Covid.

A bad flu season is 80,000 dead. We’ve got about 18,000 dead from influenza this year; we have a hundred from corona. Which should you be worried about, influenza or corona? A hundred versus 18,000? It’s not a trick question. …

What I have a problem with is the panic and the fact that businesses are getting destroyed, that people’s lives are being upended, not by the virus, but by the panic. The panic must stop. And the press, they really somehow need to be held accountable, because they are hurting people.

I want to cover my backside before I continue by saying that Coronavirus isn’t a joke and you should definitely be cautious about how you go about your daily routine so that you don’t catch it. It’s a danger to everyone, especially those who have immunocompromized bodies, the elderly, and the very young.

That said, that goes for every other sickness out there too, especially influenza.

I recently contracted Influenza A at CPAC and have spent the last week feeling sicker than I ever have in my life. I’m still suffering from the effects as I write this. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy, and I definitely feel like if I wasn’t at a much heartier age that I would not have brushed this off as easily as I did, and it hasn’t been easy.

Influenza A, despite being so prevalent in our society and having killed far more people, isn’t getting the same time of day in the media as Coronavirus. This should tell you some things.

The Coronavirus is new, relatively unknown in what it’s capable of and fast-spreading. According to epidemiologists, it’s coming for about 4o to 70 percent of the global population. Chances are, you’re going to run into it and might contract it. It’s a scary thought, especially with the fatality rate currently hovering somewhere around two to three percent at this time, though much of that is a guestimate. There’s no telling how many cases have popped up that went unreported and were just gotten over.

It makes you want to stay home, and that’s exactly what people are doing. Without people working, the economy dives. When the economy dives, everyone hurts, and now they are. The market is diving a bit and this will have wide-ranging economic effects with people selling off stocks at a rapid rate. Without people driving the economy, the economy doesn’t go anywhere.

As Dr. Drew highlighted, however, you’ve been walking around with viruses everywhere already. It’s the height of flu season, and though influenza is the far deadlier bug here in America, the media has convinced the people that it has far more to fear from Covid, which you’re far less likely to run into at this time.

The media loves a good panic. It keeps you watching them for updates, but more than that, the media loves anything that can hurt Donald Trump, and with a strong economy being the sharpest arrow in Trump’s quiver, it’s likely that the media is going to bang on this drum to get all it can out of it.

The point I’m making here is simple. Don’t buy into the media panic. It serves no purpose but to hurt us all. The media is not your friend.

The virus that is panic is the most infectious by far, and the best way to guard yourself against it is to keep calm. Be cautious about how you go about your life to be sure. Stay sanitary and be smart about what you touch, but these are rules you’d follow at any time. There’s not much more you can do than that.

Go live your life.

Brandon Morse
Senior Editor. Culture critic, and video creator. Good at bad photoshops.
Read more by Brandon Morse