by Christina Fahy
It started in January 2020. Drips of news. A virus was infecting China. My husband and I found this morbidly fascinating. We searched the web. We found footage that evaded China’s censorship. We viewed people dropping dead in the streets, colloquially referred to as ‘dropsies’. Wuhan entered lockdown. We saw a city of 11 million with empty streets; the end of the world was happening. Hospitals were packed with the infected. Makeshift hospitals were popping up. Apartment complex doors were welded shut. Men in hazmat suits sprayed disinfectant in the streets while riding Segways. Primed by a lifetime of apocalypse movies, we knew the end was nigh; the virus was coming to the United States.
We stockpiled food, vitamins, Clorox, and other supplies to survive indoors for a year. We educated friends and family about the coming crisis. We built an elaborate home air filtration system to manage aerosolized virus particles. We sought out scientific information. It was scant, but from what we could gather, this was a new virus, possibly lab-made, against which humans had no natural defense. Millions were going to die.
We locked down, confident that we had prepared well. We knew we were right. We would survive because we prepped early.
The mainstream media began to report on the virus in earnest. And in March, weeks after we had voluntarily entered our own self-imposed lockdown, the U.S. shut down – much too late, we thought.
We were on high alert. Our nerves were jangled. Our worst fears were unfolding outside our windows in real time. Every cough and sneeze was cause for alarm: Is this it? Are we infected? Will we be on ventilators in a couple of weeks?
Mainstream information and guidelines were ambiguous. Asymptomatic illness was supposedly a grave threat to all. 1-in-4 were going to get sick and die. Someone in our own family was going to get sick. And possibly die. The experts said don’t bother with a mask; it’s not going to help. Stay home. Stay safe.
We stayed home. We stayed safe.
We watched the numbers. We saw them rise. Hospitals were going to get overrun. People would soon die in the streets. Cats and dogs were testing positive. But the children, thank the good Lord, were safe. Children didn’t die. At worst, they were asymptomatic carriers. For now. Panic shopping across the country ensued. There was a run on toilet paper. Food supply chains, it was rumored, would soon dry up. Consequently, millions more would die of starvation. And horror of horrors, the ventilators that meant the difference between life and death for those stricken with the new disease were running out.
The experts who stated authoritatively that masks were unnecessary, now recommended that masks be worn when leaving the home. And now it was time to social distance! The experts assured us tests were not necessary for everyone: Only get a test if specific criteria are met. Then tests were mass produced and eligibility for testing expanded. Millions of tests were administered. The case rate rose.
Then the numbers started to decline – both new cases and new deaths.
Declining numbers were attributed to mitigation efforts: lockdowns, social distancing, masks. But what about the essential workers? What about the mobs at grocery stores? What about the millions that flowed through international airports a few weeks ago? Where were the mass deaths that logically should have resulted from what the mainstream media termed an existential threat?
The numbers continued to decline.
What, exactly, was going on? Where were the dropsies? Where were the overloaded crematoriums? Where was the footage of hospitals with corpses lining the hallways?
We watched Andrew Cuomo, the ‘people’s governor.’ He was clearly out and about daily. Why wasn’t he infected? And the White House and its press corp. Where were the infections?
Public officials started wearing masks on camera and citizens were admonished to, as well. “You aren’t a smart person if you don’t.” “If you go out, stay 6 feet apart from other humans at all times.” “Follow the rules.” “The rules are there to keep you safe from others and to keep others safe from you.” “Act as if everyone were sick!” “Follow the rules!” We learned from studies conducted by scientists throughout the world that the virus could travel 10, 20 or more feet through the air, but I guess 6 feet would be enough in the United States. The mask will keep you safe. And what about the studies that said the virus could infect you through the mucosal membranes in the eyes? Don’t worry, the experts said, wear a mask and everything will be alright. Or don’t, and everything will still be alright.
And again, what about those essential workers? No PPE and on the ‘front lines’ for weeks. Shouldn’t they be sick or dead by now? Don’t worry, the experts said, there’s a second wave coming. You’ll see. All of these people will be sick and perhaps dead soon.
The numbers continued to decline.
Then we heard about antibody testing. Apparently, millions throughout the country had likely been infected over the last several months but didn’t realize it. And look at the essential workers! According to Cuomo, they had a lower incidence of infection than the preppers who hadn’t left their houses in months. Of course they did!
The facts weren’t adding up. Why weren’t people dying en masse? We’re pretty darn certain it wasn’t the masks and social distancing.
LOCAL STATS — Chenango County (Population, ~47,536)
- Confirmed cases: 118
- Current Hospitalizations: 3
- Total Recoveries: 84
- Confirmed Deaths: 4
- Number of Tests Administered: 1,965