COVID Never Went Away

Emma Schifferl, Assistant Editor-in-Chief

With the two-year anniversary of COVID-19 coming up, the virus is still hated. No amount of time can possibly make anyone like it. All this virus has done is maim, abuse, exploit, and kill the people who unfortunately come across it. It has also created rifts in friendships, communities, and everyday life. Some people believe COVID-19 isn’t that harmful, and others know its true capabilities. 

COVID-19 kills. As morbid as it sounds, the virus has killed nearly 6 million people worldwide and infected hundreds of millions more. Every day, the numbers come in revealing worldwide deaths, statewide deaths, and county deaths. Every day, you hear about people in your area who are getting infected or even passing away. COVID-19 is a wrecking ball that doesn’t care who it hits.

While new cases are being reported every day, a new angle on COVID-19 has arisen. This totally non-controversial topic, of course, is masks. As of last week, our school no longer requires masks, and this has created mixed emotions. And it’s not just our school and our state that aren’t renewing mask mandates; most of the country is beginning to lift its mandates. In fact, many will be gone or nearly gone by the end of February.  

You would hope that people would be understanding and willing to comply with mandates meant to protect the general public, but more and more often, you see anti-mask and anti-vaccine protests happen within the United States and all over the world. You see these protests coming to fruition in the form of the Canadian trucker protest in Ottawa. Finding vaccine mandates unacceptable, a few truckers decided to convoy all across Canada, blocking roadways, creating a cacophony of noises, and all around tomfoolery. Even though 90% of truckers in Canada are vaccinated, these vocal protestors garnered support from quite a few, including American politicians. 

No matter what sort of social or political rift COVID creates, it thrives on large gatherings. While recent case numbers have declined, no one can be sure that they will continue to do so. After all, they’ve fallen before–only to rise again. We need a healthy dose of caution.