OPINION: The longer we don’t listen, the worse it’ll get

Amanda Arnold is a senior journalism major and managing sports editor for The George-Anne.

Amanda Arnold

Listen. I am sick and tired of going online and seeing people ignoring the guidelines recommended by the government. This is beyond just the seasonal flu. The longer we don’t listen, the worse this pandemic will get.

I am a journalism major. I am in no way a science-minded person. But, when this virus first became a concern, I was ALL IN. I developed an obsession with it. I wanted to understand it as best as I could so that I could stay safe and educate those around me.

The mindset of “if I get it, I get it” is horrible and dangerous to society. Everyone’s body is not able to fight off this virus. I am someone who is constantly sick… last semester I was sick for almost three months out of the semester. Though I’m not immunocompromised, I know I have to take precautions to stay healthy. 

Everyone does not have this luxury! Some people can’t just take a vitamin and be a-okay. It’s not just the elderly either. There’s more people who have health problems than you think. People in your classes. People who you work with. People who work at the businesses you regularly go to.

It amazes me how many people think they know more than the CDC and health professionals around the world. I know that my college level education in JOURNALISM does not provide enough knowledge for me to make blanket statements about a killer virus. I have to listen to experts in the field and you should too. It’s okay to just keep your mouth closed sometimes. What an idea, right?

Now, let’s talk about the people who are still hanging out with their friends and going out in public. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again. The only places that anyone should be going is to work and maybe to the grocery store. Going to parties and hosting large dinners at this time are just selfish. You can celebrate your birthday with your friends next month, when we’re not on lockdown anymore. 

Seeing people on the beach partying for spring break just infuriated me. I understand that as college students, we are stressed out all the time and look forward to spring break. But, things happen (like… I don’t know, a global pandemic) and plans have to change. You having a good time and drinking non-stop for a week may be good for you. But it’s not good for the people around you. Eventually, those spring breakers had to come home. As soon as they did, the number of US cases sparked.

The United States does not have the healthcare system to support this. Hospitals are overcrowded, doctors and nurses are overworked, tests are not evenly distributed, and many people cannot afford treatment… and no, it is not just minorities. 

Bottom line is, you cannot be angry that the government is trying to prevent thousands of preventable deaths. It may not be serious to you… but thanks to y’all with that mindset, we are stuck inside for another month. This is our new normal. No social functions, no going out to eat and no to being free. We brought this onto ourselves when we blamed the severity of the pandemic on “mass hysteria” from the media.