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The Blessings of COVID-19

I am a Russian Orthodox Christian, freelance writer and photographer from West Virginia. I have a B.A. in Philosophy and Fine Art from ETSU.

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If You Can't Learn from Tragedy, Your Whole Life Will be Tragic

I am sure all the people who have lost a loved one due to the virus generally known as COVID-19 don’t tend to see anything good about it. There has been a lot of hurt, death, exhausted medical staff, inadequate amounts of medical equipment and medication, lost jobs, lost businesses and the list goes on. I am not denying any of that, but in the face of something this terrible, we should at least recognize that there are blessings that have also come from it.

Before COVID-19, our society was becoming more “connected” but also more anti-social. We regularly checked our friends’ and family members’ social media posts, texted them when we should have been working or learning, but rarely did we sit down and have real conversations. I have found the people who have grown up with this type of technology are very socially awkward, and its no wonder why. One has to develop social skills just like any other. I would imagine they are less likely to understand unspoken communication in person as well. It’s sad. After COVID-19 we find ourselves wanting to see our friends and loved ones more than ever before because in many places and on numerous occasions, we couldn’t. Like most humans, Americans can’t stand to be told there is something they can’t do, so even though we had already forgone the old fashioned get-together in person, now we want to do it. It made us appreciate the ability to get together with friends and family, and desire to actually do it. That is a blessing.

We have also been awakened to the fact that China is the source of most of our medication and most of our medical supplies. That was a big slap in the face sort of wake up, but unfortunately I think our government has gotten over the sting and conveniently forgotten about that revelation. I have nothing against the Chinese people, and I acknowledge that they have been more highly advanced than the West for most of human history. I am glad that our slave wage economy has ensured that there are plenty of jobs for people in China who make the things we need because we couldn’t afford them otherwise. Its a real catch-22; our workforce gets slave wages because they have to compete with cheap labor in China, but our workers depend on cheap imports from China because they couldn’t afford many things they need to live without them. The way we have gotten in this mess is really simple, but would take a long time to explain, so I won’t go into that here. I just need to bring attention to the situation as it stands. It would be a blessing that we have acknowledged this problem exists if we do something about it. That remains to be seen.

Despite the horrific devastation in human lives and livelihoods, COVID-19 has given us the opportunity to face up to some important things that we need to address as a country and culture. The blessings this awareness could potentially bring could be great if realized fully. Whether we will seize the opportunity or not remains to be seen.

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