Social Distancing Sucks. But Corona Sucks More.

As a community, we need to realize the importance of social distancing

Caroline Stevenson, Managing Editor

On Thursday, March 12th, the entire Scituate community received shocking news–all Scituate Public Schools would be on a break for the following two weeks (and foreseeable future). At first, I was thrilled–this meant hanging out with my friends and enjoying the last parts of my senior year with my friends. As ignorant as this sounds, most people thought of it this way: we didn’t really understand what was going on, and, as humans do, we immediately thought, “Since we aren’t being directly affected, then who cares?” 

Soon after this, I decided to go on my phone and go on Buzzfeed, a pretty normal occurrence. After scrolling through meaningless pop culture articles and quizzes determining which celebrity family I belong in, I decided to click on the news tab to try and make sense of what is going on with the coronavirus. Instantly, dozens of articles began to pop up. Journalists were discussing the lockdown throughout the entire country of Italy and the actions of the Center for Disease Control and the Trump Administration. Actions being taken at the state level, such as schools across the country being closed for the foreseeable future, people trapped in airports or different countries due to travel bans, were the subject of several other articles. 

Yet, what stuck with me most were articles concerning families being torn apart as their loved ones are being sent into the ICU, with no promise of health or a future. Pictures of families waving to their loved ones living in nursing homes, as they risk the health of one another upon meer entrance of the facility. There are stories of individuals being out of work and in a state of financial instability due to the traumatic effect this virus has had on the economy. And while I don’t know any of these people, nor do they live in Scituate, my stomach turned in knots. I felt angry, sad, confused, and nervous, as nothing in my life had ever been this catastrophic or impacted so many people. I knew I had to do something to contribute to the effort of slowing this disease, so I did what many others have been doing–social distancing. 

Social distancing scares me. I’m someone who hates being alone for too long, and I hate having nothing to do. I always try to find a way to get out of the house and do something. However, hearing these stories and seeing these pictures, I know it is necessary–not just for my own health, but for the health of my entire family, especially my parents. Seeing so many people on Instagram, my own classmates, out and about in the area, treating this recommended quarantine as a surprise vacation, frustrates me. It makes me feel less and less optimistic of our future and the possibility of treating and stopping this pandemic sooner rather than later. It won’t be until this virus is in our homes, or in the homes of our loved ones, until our community decides to actually respect and follow these cautious steps, which is the most devastating part of this whole aspect. 

I’ll admit I was ignorant of the scale of this problem not too long ago, yet it is time we as a community realize the importance of social distancing, not just for our own health, but for the health of our community. In times like these, all we can do is respect and follow the instructions and precautions given by medical professionals–as well as state and government leaders–in order to be able to enjoy things, like the rest of my senior year with my friends. You don’t need to hang out with your friends every day, or go on Minot drives 24/7 during this break, because, in the end, social distancing may suck, but getting the virus will suck even more.