OUR VIEW: Sacrificing health and safety for the sake of our Economy is unbelievable


Clarion illustration by Anica Graney

Chris Bird, News Editor

There have been plenty of concerns and opinions being shared surrounding the Covid-19 situation in America and how we should all be proceeding in these difficult times. One debate that seems to come up again and again is the question of whether we should continue to enforce social distancing and the closure of non-essential business, or if we should return to work for the sake of revitalizing our hurt economy.

The Clarion believes that the fact there are so many people in leadership positions actively asking that people go out and risk their health and safety for the sake of stock market numbers and corporate profits is absolutely sickening.

Leaders such as President Trump and our own Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson have suggested that a decline in our economy and the mental toll of that as well as isolation are a greater risk than Covid-19.

Sen. Johnson even made the appeal that “Every premature death is a tragedy, but death is an unavoidable part of life.” Yes, death is a part of life, but we can absolutely prevent further infections and deaths from this virus if we actually take this situation seriously and focus on limiting the spread and encouraging people to limit social contact.

It’s insulting to suggest that it is simply inevitable for people to die from this situation while also encouraging that we all stop taking measures to prevent further infections and deaths, making this pandemic worse.

Do not be fooled into thinking that the people who are going to be affected if we pretend that everything is normal and return to business as usual will be some theoretical statistic or distant person you have never met.

 The people who will be hurt if this virus is allowed to spread further by having everyone to go back to work in person are going to be those you know and love. Think of every single person who matters to you, who you love and care about, and think about how they might fare against a virus that is fully capable of endangering their lives.

In his USA Today opinion piece, Sen. Johnson asked that we consider how this situation may affect the future generations, while asking that we return to work and abandon aggressive measures to control the spread of Covid-19. He addresses this by asking how future generations will deal with the economic burden caused by this crisis.

This is an ironic appeal, because if we don’t take serious precautions in this time there will be an incredible human cost that will be felt for generations to come, and we can’t just work extra hard to recover human lives and heal the emotional toll of a truly uncontrolled outbreak.

Money is just a thing, unlike the people that surround us. Money exists as an organized system to support humans and our needs. We are not born to support an economy; an economy exists to support us.

Even if people wish to look at this situation from a distance and consider the hard numbers of how this is affecting our economy, it is incredibly important to take into account the potential for this virus to get even worse and cause more serious problems in the future if we don’t take it seriously right now.

Having the workforce return to their jobs as usual and trigger even faster infection rates would mean that this crisis will only continue for a longer period of time and affect even more people. We’d like to hear how anyone can justify saving our economy for a few months only to cause a greater crisis in the future, which could have exponentially greater negative effects.

Short-sighted panic seems to be the flavor of the month, whether it’s buying up more toilet paper than anyone could use in a month or suggesting that people go out and die for the sake of quarterly profits. If you care about the health of our economy and our people, the best thing to do right now is to allow our nation to recover.

When everyone has had time to recover and we have made progress in fighting this virus, then a healthy workforce can return to help bring the economy out of recession. Forcing the issue and jumping the gun will only lead to more problems, which we don’t have the capacity to deal with at the moment because right now most regular people are just trying to keep themselves and their loved ones healthy and safe.