Every generation is tested. This disease that has come upon us presents harsh and terrible options.
It’s been reported that some (only some!) younger people are attempting to party on. The notion is that Covid-19 threatens old people, while somehow magically leaving the young unaffacted.
Even if that turns out to be true, young people who party on may be doing a great deal of damage.
For one thing, if this epidemic goes into full rage, many thousands of young people die.
But on a deeper level, the party-on crowd will contribute to the rapid spread of the virus, and that will take a toll on everyone — especially doctors, nurses, EMTs and other health care providers.
The party crowd is endangering the lives of the very people we need most right now. They’re endangering the lives of the very people they will need, and soon. An overwhelmed health care systems means mothers and children may die at childbirth, emergency surgeries won’t be done in time, accident victims will die who might have been saved, and so on … and on … and on.
Treatment of all kinds, which might have saved lives and preserved health, will be administered too late or not at all. People of all ages will suffer, and some will die, because the health care system has broken down.
Doctors and nurses are at high risk but so are police and firefighters, and anyone else who deals with the public, as well as people who are already sick. The deeper the disease penetrates the population, the greater their risk.
Previous generations have been asked to pick up weapons and, at great personal risk, defend the nation. Some dodged that obligation, but most Americans served, and sacrificed.
This generation is being asked to stay home for a while.
That’s not easy, since it involves a profound disruption of daily life, and threatens the livelihood of millions of people.
But the question is the same for this generation as it was for all the previous ones.
The nation is in trouble.
Will you dodge?
Or will you serve?