We are handling the pandemic wrong

Timber Schuman, Reporter

I don’t need to explain what Covid-19 is; we’ve all heard about it and are affected by it in a major way. Most people would’ve never thought they would live to see a global pandemic shut down workplaces and schools. But what I do believe is we are handling this wrong. Sure, it may have been hard to prepare for such a time until that time actually comes, but common sense should still direct how we handle this. Masks don’t  protect you as well as a lot think and the government seems to only lockdown in certain areas, making for a half-hearted attempt. 

Masks may be a good idea, but do not properly aid in getting rid of this pandemic. Doctor’s masks are much thicker and able to stop much finer particles than the shirt material many people are using. This can be proven by lighting a match and trying to blow it out through both masks. The doctor’s mask will stop your breath while the other will allow your breath to carry right through it. According to the CDC, N95 masks (doctor ones) “are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders,” meaning that our masks aren’t nearly as effective. Putting a layer of thicker material like flannel in your mask will somewhat stop this, but not to N95 standards. It may be heavier and more hot and uncomfortable, but it is significantly more effective. 

As we all know, some businesses are still open, but who is the government to tell which businesses and workers are essential? If a business has customers buy goods or services from them, couldn’t they be claimed as essential to that person? The best play is to either open everything up or shut everything down, no exceptions except for police and others who would help enforce the temporary guidelines. Opening everything up would not help contain the spread at all, but with our situation as of now, we are already not doing a good job. With other stores closed down but supermarkets still up and running, we are actually actively putting people closer together. Right now, we are just inconveniencing the public in an ineffective attempt to stop the virus. We need to set a date of lockdown so families would have some time to buy what they need to survive for a couple weeks and then completely shut down everything. This would keep the public isolated enough to make a difference. It’s a stressful time, no doubt about that, and quarantine isn’t so fun after a while. But truly locking down for a short amount of time would be better than going through cycles of half-isolation like a drowsy heartbeat. 

No one expected this pandemic, and it’s hard to fight it when no one knew to be prepared. Yet as I have explained above, the government isn’t battling it efficiently. Good quality masks are in shortage and could help stop the spread, but the majority of the masks being worn aren’t doing anything. Also, the government chooses to only shut down half of society, funneling everyone into a lesser number of buildings, increasing the chance of spreading because six feet isn’t possible anymore. We need to figure this out, and we need to figure it out sooner than later.