Maybe I'm paranoid or maybe I'm just flat-out wrong, but I am not going to go outside even though my state isolation restrictions were lifted last week. Just like everyone else, quarantine has frazzled and drove me insane. I completely understand why people are so desperate to go to the beach, group up with friends, or party on the weekend. But I still. Won't. Do. It.
Here's why: the people choosing to go out are still selfishly putting other people's lives at risk.
There, I said it. I see all of my friends on Instagram spreading out, traveling the state, and coming into contact with dozens of other people, and I find it selfish. If you look at the rate of infection across the United States, the trend is still upward. In fact, this week the COVID-19 deaths in the United States reached 72,000.
Time and time again, I hear from college students my age that "we don't need to worry about the virus because it doesn't kill healthy, young adults like us." Meanwhile, it is rampant in elderly homes across my county, my family friends are battling the coronavirus that has progressed into pneumonia, and my immunocompromised grandmother is fearful of even going to the grocery store.
I believe that the government was morally wrong in lifting the bans so soon, especially since medical and science professionals estimate that it won't be safe to socialize until late summer. Americans live in such an economy-centered society where money is placed more valuable than all other things. This ban lift has taught me that even human lives are less valued than wealth in this nation — and that terrifies me. This means it's up to us, the people, to protect our neighbor's lives.
So, to all of the abled, young teenagers and adults flooding out of their homes in desperation to socialize, you're right. You probably won't die of COVID-19 or notice any symptoms if you get it. But the children, elderly, and immunocompromised of your city and state just might.
The pandemic lockdowns weren't just for your own health; they were for everyone's health. Quarantine only works if we work as a whole community and we need your help to stop this virus. If I can stay home as a healthy college student for a few more months, so can you.