Why is the United States responding to this pandemic in a completely different manner than the last pandemic? Why are we overreacting? Why is there such extreme panic during this coronavirus pandemic when there was so little panic during the last coronavirus pandemic? What is driving this level of panic? Is there something about this new coronavirus that we are not being told about? These are all legitimate questions that should be asked, but no one is asking them, everyone is just panicking and we need to know why?
H1N1 Pandemic Dow goes up, COVID-19 pandemic Dow plummets. Why are we overreacting?
The H1N1 global pandemic, resulted in 12, 469 deaths in the United States from April 2009 to April 2010 and 575,400 deaths worldwide according to the CDC. Yet, the DOW climbed from a low of 7,426 in April 2009 to 11,206 in April 2010.
Conversely, the COVID-19 global pandemic, which began in December 2019 and as of March 19, 2020 resulted in 150 deaths in the United States and 9, 115 deaths worldwide according to the Johns Hopkins coronavirus resource center. Yet, the DOW has plummeted from a high of 29,543 in February 2020 to a low of 18,766 as of March 18, 2020 and is looking to drop further.
Why are we overreacting? Why the two different reactions by the DOW to these two global coronavirus pandemics ten years apart? It makes absolutely no sense, until you factor in the level of panic and fear that was produced by both pandemics and the completely different responses by all levels of government.
It was business as usual in the United States during the H1N1 global pandemic
According to the CDC, 80 percent of the H1N1 related deaths occurred in people younger than 65 years of age. The H1N1 coronavirus was killing healthy school children, college students, and working adults. Social distancing, hand washing, and covering your coughs and sneezes were recommended just as they are now with the COVID-19 coronavirus. However, after some schools closed at the recommendation of the CDC, they were immediately re-opened after the CDC changed its recommendation six days later, “to recommend against school closure for community mitigation purposes.”
Colleges were still open for class and students were still living in campus dorms. Local, county, and state governments did not shut down a single business during the pandemic.
Hospitals did not run short of critical medical supplies or equipment, people were not panic shopping or hoarding toilet paper, canned goods, and hand sanitizer. The National Guard was not deployed, nor did the U.S. Navy dispatch its hospital ships, and criminals were not being released form jails in response to H1N1. It was business as usual.
Interestingly, then-president Obama did not even declare H1N1 a national emergency until October 2009, more than four months after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared H1N1 a global pandemic. Only a small handful of states declared emergencies during the H1N1 pandemic, most did not.
Shutting down businesses, schools, and releasing criminals from jails for COVID-19
The new coronavirus, on the other hand, is producing a completely different response. Almost all of the COVID-19 related deaths are occurring in people over the age of 65. The exact opposite of the H1N1 coronavirus.
Even though COVID-19 is resulting in mild or no symptoms at all for healthy people, including school children, college students, and working adults, there has been a mad rush by some local, county, and state governments to shut down schools, colleges, bars, restaurants, and all events that would have large gatherings of people.
Major sporting events have been postponed or cancelled. Businesses of all sizes are having employees work from home, if possible. Some sheriff’s departments around the country are emptying out their jails, Churches, concert and play venues, and movie theaters have been closing down as well.
People are panic shopping and hoarding supplies to the extent that stores are having trouble keeping shelves stocked. Even the major airlines are flying around planes that are nearly empty even though there has been no domestic travel plan put in place.
The federal government is letting the panic driven decision making at lower levels of government steer the national response to the coronavirus
At the national level, the federal government is attempting to keep pace with the panic and fear induced decision making at the local, county, and state levels that is barreling this country towards an economic collapse. Why are we overreacting in this manner to the coronavirus?
All of this panic has resulted in medical supply shortages, National Guard activations, Navy hospital ships being deployed, the Defense Production Act being invoked, and Congress is passing coronavirus response bills in excess of a Trillion dollars. This is becoming absolute madness.
The panic driven overreaction to this coronavirus needs to be reigned in immediately before it creates more devastation to this country than the virus itself.
Related News Stories
New York Times. “Some ask a taboo question: Is America overreacting to coronavirus?” March 18, 2020.
Washington Times. “It’s the virus, stupid—not the economy.” March 18, 2020.
Fox News. “Obama Declares H1N1 Flu ‘National Emergency‘.” October 25, 2009.