How about a good, uplifting, light-hearted coronavirus blog for a change?

Just kidding. WE’RE ALL DOOMED!!

Okay, not really, settle down! I actually just want to talk about panic.

There’s a lot of posts out there right now decrying the panic. “Stop panicking, everyone!” “Everybody needs to stop fear-mongering and spreading panic!” “Panic does nothing people, be smart!”

Actually, I disagree. Panic can be a good thing. Panic causes people to take action. Panic has already caused so many of the flu-truthers — those people who have been loudly and proudly proclaiming this is just the flu — to delete their posts. Panic is removing dangerous disinformation from the world.

Panic is what is causing people to stock up on supplies. Those supplies are going to save lives. Panic is causing companies to cancel conventions. Panic is what sends people into isolation, what causes travel to stop, what ignites social distancing measures that will keep us all safe.

Panic will be what flattens the infection and mortality lines that are so devastatingly steep right now.

There’s a reason we have the panic gene in our DNA. Panic is an instinct in our evolutionary makeup that causes us to take actions for our survival. Why did our ancestors flee from the giant cave bear? They panicked. Every one of our ancient ancestors panicked many times. That’s why we’re here today. Sabre-tooth tigers once used Cro-Magnon non-panicking truthers’ bones as toothpicks.

As long as panic doesn’t turn into hysteria, we can utilize that primal fear to take actions for the good. We can harness the fear and the adrenaline and the stress to make decisions that will result in our survival. Embrace panic and let it drive you to taking action. Without it, humans turn into quivering, gelatinous masses incapable of action.

What we need to avoid is hysteria. We’re seeing it already, with the melee in Georgia this morning where a man was stabbed over a case of water. This is just the beginning. Be ready for a lot more of this. This is where healthy panic turns into criminal hysteria, and this is what we need to avoid.

People have told me my blogs are causing them to lose sleep. Although that wasn’t my goal or my hope, I’m kind of glad. Because that means you’re realizing the dangers and (hopefully) you’re taking steps to mitigate those dangers. Anxiety is never fun, but, like panic, it can shock us from our shell of denial and make us wake up to the dangers we’re facing. Once you’re protected—once you’re prepared for what’s coming, anxiety will fade away and you’ll sleep soundly.

One must wrestle FEAR to the ground.

Going back to hysteria and how it’s going to get worse: In Italy right now, doctors are beginning to triage. They are sending people home because they have no ability to treat them. They have no empty beds, no available ventilators, no way to ease patients’ pain. They are looking people in the eye and effectively telling them, “Go home and die.” They’re having to make very difficult decisions because their healthcare system is overwhelmed. They cannot treat everybody. I just want to remind everyone that our trajectory is fully pointing toward worse than this happening here in the United States. We are days behind Italy with regard to isolationist steps to control the upward trajectory of the infection and death lines. Triage is going to mean the most vulnerable of our society, the elderly and sick, are eventually going to be turned away from critically needed medical care. This is going to be devastating. We need to mentally prepare for it now.

The other real danger area for us right now is our national blood supply. According to the Red Cross, our nation is critically low on supply because of a number of unfortunate compilations of events that culminated in this viral outbreak. This is the season when blood supply is typically low anyway, but now a bunch of blood drives around the country have been cancelled.

Anybody know any vampires who might be stockpiling supplies?

At some point in the very near future, the Red Cross and other blood banks will need to begin triaging the blood supply. Every two seconds in this country, somebody needs a blood transfusion. Some of these people are going to get turned away. The good news is that less travel equates to fewer accidents which lowers demand, however, exponentially increased sicknesses may blunt that benefit. If you can get out there and donate blood, please do. There is no risk of contracting coronavirus through blood donations, so don’t let that fear stop you from doing everything you can to help mitigate this impending disaster.

It’s almost noon, Pacific time, and President Trump is about to address the nation. He’s very likely to declare a national emergency. This will cause more panic, and that’s a good thing. Somehow, some way, there are still deniers out there. There are still people saying the world has gone mad. Once those final truthers actually start to feel panic instead of anger and bewilderment, we’ll be able to finally all get on board with the steps we need to take to control this thing.

Only by panicking while avoiding hysteria will we “Flatten the Line.”

 

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