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This is the kind of attitude that gets people killed.

Here is how I explained it to my nine year old:

Ebola and other plagues are usually easy to catch and stop. They are deadly, but that very deadliness makes them stand out. We spot them. We stop them.

#COVID is different.
#Covid ‘s mildness is the most dangerous aspect of it.

Many people who catch it don’t even experience symptoms.

Children, who cough on everything and never wash their hands CARRY IT WITHOUT SYMPTOMS.

When symptoms do show, they come two weeks later. Two WEEKS.
That means that for every sick person we see and test and hospitalize, there are probably a hundred people walking around feeling just fine, infecting other people who feel just fine, who infect OTHER people who feel JUST FINE.

Then two weeks later... KABOOM
Every old person, every person with COPD or heart disease or diabetes or cancer or even just someone who TAKES ADVIL, experiences fever, coughing, and in 15-20% of cases, deathly pneumonia.

The lining of their lungs PEELS OFF.
In scans, doctors say it looks like their lungs are full of ground up glass.

And here’s the thing - we can treat it. It’s a virus so we can’t kill it but with oxygen and supportive therapy people recover.

....Unless everyone gets sick all at once.
And when you have hundreds and then thousands and then hundreds of thousands of Typhoid Marys visiting beaches and coffee shops and holding little birthday parties, a LOT of old and sick people contract it all at once.

And the medical system just isn’t set up for that.
How many people over age 80 have you got in your city? How many people with diabetes? Cancer? Heart disease? Now imagine all of them showing up in the ER at once.

That’s what happened in Italy. It happened because people who were young and fit and felt fine went out anyway.
Now doctors in Italy are forced to say that if your mother or grandfather is over 80, they will just have to suffocate to death at home because they don’t have enough oxygen for everyone, enough IVs for everyone, enough nurses and doctors for everyone.
Italy is being forced to decide who will live and who will die and they have decided that those over 80 aren’t worth saving.

The death toll skyrockets as people just can’t be helped.

The danger of COVID is different from Ebola. Ebola is terrifying but you can’t miss it.
When someone is bleeding from their eyeballs we go “yikes, let’s not let this person outside.”

When a happy child is running around with a slight cough, that’s just TUESDAY. I have two kids. They are ALWAYS coughing. Kids trade colds at school more than Pokémon cards.
So when a kid has COVID they will often look no different than they ever have. They might not even cough. Many people who test positive (like Idris Elba) have ZERO SYMPTOMS but - and this is the scary part - they are STILL CONTAGIOUS.
I could have COVID and not know it. I could feel just dandy. But by deciding to go to the local cafe and breath the air of other people, I could kill somebody’s mother.

I could infect so many people that doctors have to decide who to save.
And yeah, some of us HAVE to go out. We have to work, we have essential service jobs, we have a grandmother that definitely SHOULD NOT go out and the local pharmacy doesn’t deliver medications.

But if only a few go out, there are fewer people around. Fewer for me to infect.
And even if I infect those people who also have to go out, when they go home to their family and pass it on, the family stays put and it ends there, instead of having four more Typhoid Marys walking around shedding disease.
And if that happens, it will take the virus longer to spread. And if it takes longer to spread, not so many will come down with it all at once. And if only a manageable amount of people are in the hospital at any given time, we don’t have to have put grandma in the trash heap.
All we need to do to save the people we love from COVID is stay home and watch Netflix and order your groceries. If you can, if your job permits it, if it is POSSIBLE, you SHOULD BE DOING IT.

Because the only real danger in COVID is the idiots who think they are fine.
If you’ve never played Plague Inc, now is a great time to start. Anyone who has played knows the secret is to make a really mild airborne virus that is hard to spot and easy to spread.

...then you make it deadly.
And now I will be posting receipts for my claims.…
This article has FANTASTIC graphic simulations to show you how self isolation of much of the population can slow the spread and reduce the caseload for doctors.…
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