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11 March 2020
If we ever needed confirmation that humans are curious and confusing animals we need only consider the ‘toilet-paper’ response to worldwide concern regarding the coronavirus disease.
Of all the things people letting fear dictate their everyday behaviour have done in response to the virus threat, stocking up on toilet paper remains the most bizarre and concerning.
The nonsensical stockpiling response that has led to empty supermarket shelves and a shortage of products for everyday consumers has revealed a dark underbelly of humanity. It shows how easily we can turn into unthinking, self-centred and panicking monsters when confronted with the unknown and damaged our reputation in our ability as adults to pass on good messages to our children.
It is beyond doubt that the COVID-19 virus can cause a nasty and in some circumstances deadly respiratory illness.
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It spreads easily and has already killed many people, while at the same time leaving many others relatively unaffected.
It’s a bad bug, bad enough to send international markets into turmoil and have countries across the globe either on high alert or already deeply engaged in response efforts.
But we can’t afford to let apocalyptic-style fear and panic govern what we do and how we respond.
Infectious diseases have long been part of life and perhaps the crisis we are experiencing is as much a good wake-up call to us all when it comes to considering everything from our character to hygiene, diet and overall health.
There is a suggestion of inevitability that this virus, in whatever forms it mutates into, will become part of everyday life and it will come down to how strong we are socially and mentally as well as physically in beating this threat.
The surprise element in all of this has gone and that puts us all in a position of strength.
Importantly, it also represents a good opportunity to get educated.
There is plenty of advice readily available, whether it be how to reduce the spread of infection and avoiding risks to how to strengthen immune systems through diets, sleep or activities or protect our most fragile.
What we need to avoid is hysteria and panic and instead work collectively as communities on what we can do as individuals.
Let’s be smart instead of stupid.
Information about COVID-19 is available on website www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus.
The entire March 11, 2020 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!