Subtitle: An Ever-Pandemic Age?
In a recent post (A Coronavirus Chronicle #6, May 1, 2020), I pondered the thought of another who wrote of a “post-pandemic age.” I concluded, writing: “I wonder whether we, the human race – now standing, indeed, for years, having stood, perhaps unawares, on the threshold of a worldwide new-normal – ever will live in a post-pandemic age.”
I am not a virologist.
I am not an epidemiologist.
I am not a biostatistician.
Nevertheless, as an intense observer of life and human nature and as an inveterate questioner, I ask:
As the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), and the COVID-19 (aka SARS-CoV-2), each and all, are members of the same novel coronaviral family, is it possible that we have yet to meet all of their equally highly infectious siblings or relatives?
If so, then, adopting an oceanic metaphor, is it possible that SARS, MERS, and COVID-19 are successive waves, portending others yet to lash (crash onto) our human existential shore?
If so, then, as 9/11, though a historical (that is, past) event of grave tragedy, led to ongoing changes, indeed, restrictions in our living, along the ever-present fault line of individual liberty and communal safety – for example, how we travel, how we build and secure our private residences and public establishments, how we conduct (indeed, insure, that is, regulate the risk of) commerce, how we allocate and manage our federal budget (remember when there was no Department of Homeland Security?) – is it possible that there are more regulations to come, for example, continued, even periodic orders for social distancing and quarantine and, when a vaccine becomes available, the necessity of bearing proof of immunization?
I don’t know. Therefore, in terms of a slangy acronym, I’m not IJS (I’m just saying), but rather IJA (I’m just asking).