Is the COVID -19 posing more danger to man than man himself?

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Discussing how the COVID-19 is not on its own affecting us all
Raising awareness to take strategic steps
Reading Time: 6 minutes

The COVID-19 and the implications it poses have been widely discussed these days. What we know about this new disease is that it primarily affects the lungs, is highly contagious and has no cure yet. This disease has become a threat to all individuals around the globe since it has acquired a pandemic status.

So, what exactly is a disease anyway?

The definitions of this term vary according to the perspectives and opinions of different scientists.

However, it is commonly defined as a divergence from the normal functioning of a system. This may affect a community both positively and negatively depending on various factors like its severity, prevalence, curability, etc.

Understanding the occurrence of diseases

Everything occurs due to a reason so do different challenges like diseases. For centuries humanity has passed through different phases and trials including the pandemics like the Spanish flu (1918), the black plague, etc. This just shows the unpredictability of existence. Any factor can change lives drastically from utopia to dystopia due to which it’s better to be well equipped, aware all the time and not away from nature which is one of the lessons we can take from this ongoing Corona pandemic.

While being well-aware and well equipped is a good and advisable thing however that doesn’t always mean it’s going to solve all our problems. However, one should always do things in a balanced way and on time.

The way of avoiding the virus has also reminded us of how just the simplest things we didn’t pay attention to such as washing hands, can save us and if ignored can have huge consequences and the repercussions can have long-lasting effects.

Just like any disease the Coronavirus also has positive and negative implications. Implications such as those related to social, political and economic aspects vary from society to society, in nature, and degree.

The WHO (World Health Organization) states that” health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. This statement also proves that man also contributes to an unpredictable situation based on their behavior and response which further affects the consequences of any situation whether positively or negatively.

There’s also a difference between responding and reacting. A reaction is done suddenly and impulsively without much analysis whereas responding is the opposite. Right now, most of us are reacting to the panic being created rather than thinking intuitively and responding timely. For instance, there’s a lot of panics which is justified but also extreme panic is not good and unfavorable as it will aggravate the crisis by exploiting the emotions of the people.

The major factors getting affected by our reactions happen to be of crucial importance for the functioning of any society. If they do get affected, the whole society may suffer and destabilize. However, if a proper response is given, we can get favorable outcomes.

These factors include Sociological, Economic, Political, Academic and Psychological that not only affect individuals but also institutions, society, and even the whole world. Our irresponsible responses can make the situation unmanageable.

Sociological factors:

Due to the unnecessary panic, a lot of individuals are being misled which is not only harming them but others as well. An example of this is panic buying in the U.K. This shows how the situation is affecting us socially and psychologically to the point where the human nature of selfishness is brought to the surface. A lot of people particularly from the lower classes can’t even afford to buy some items. Since certain factions of society are buying more than they need, the others are suffering.

Consequences of internalizing the fear that is being spread widely.
Consequences of internalizing the fear that is being spread widely.

Instead, people should help each other rather than being selfish; buy and consume what you need and give or save the rest for others. If you have a lot to give, then be a helping hand for others and donate in charity. If this is not done, then the needy people will get frustrated and resort to other ways of fulfilling their needs. For example, they may resort to crimes like robbery which increases anarchy and lawlessness in society that we can’t afford at any cost. We should be more sympathetic rather than selfish. Support each other because regardless of our background and differences we are all going through this together.

Socio-political behavior:

This plays a huge role and contributes a lot to any society. But this strand is also getting manipulated due to the panic and unawareness situation that’s created. Rather than getting united and supporting each either people are getting divided based upon irresponsible and untimely statements by political leaders. This shows how our behavior is creating more difficulty and hassle for all us and the government, than the pandemic itself.

A lot of instances of divisions, labeling, discriminations, cyberbullying, and blame games are occurring from the normal citizen or layman to the politicians frequently. Instead of supporting each other, we’re fighting amongst ourselves. There has been an increase in racism and xenophobic incidents since the start of the pandemic. Although they were present before as well, now they’re taking an extreme turn. This is leading to an increase in prejudice, hate, violence, and anarchy in society. It’s similar to the time when the black plague occurred. Whoever was thought to be a victim, was outcast and labeled ferociously by society. Similarly, Asians like Asian students are also getting labeled and harassed in streets which shows how the people are reacting to the term social distancing negatively due to unawareness.

Economic impact:

Due to the closure of businesses and consequent unemployment we’re going in recession just like during the times of the economic depression. A proper strategy needs to be developed to cater to this issue especially for the working class who will suffer a lot if they lose their jobs and need to earn desperately to support their families.

We should use this time and utilize it to the fullest by increasing or maintaining our productivity. Let’s take this time as an opportunity to reflect on ourselves and be a better person overall. This can be achieved through different innovative ways like online business, helping others and contributing positively to society, especially through donating and helping those in need.

Educational impact:

Online classes are being held worldwide so that the students don’t face any academic loss. It is crucial to make sure their time doesn’t get wasted, because there is no certainty regarding the end of this crisis. Online education is being imparted using apps like zoom and Team.

However, this strategy does not seem to satisfy all the students. For example, in Pakistan a lot of students from rural areas like Sindh, FATA don’t even have the basic facility of the internet which should have been present in the first place; how will they be able to catch up with these online classes? A proper system and strategy need to be developed in which all students are satisfied, and no one suffers. This also highlights the issue in society that wasn’t paid attention to before, like how basic facilities and necessities like the internet are not provided to some people which is unfair for them.

Another important message is that things may not necessarily function with the same quality as before. So, everyone should be ready to face certain compromises.

The opinions and efforts of every individual matters in making a difference.

Psychological impact:

The panic and anxiety being created to an extreme are not beneficial right now as it will aggravate the ongoing situation negatively by exploiting the emotions of the people. This also causes paranoia and obsessive behaviors which will not only harm us but others as well. Furthermore, it takes a toll on our mental health which should be given utmost importance.

Panic and fear can trigger the emotions of people negatively and further worsen the crisis.
Importance of mental health

Everything including hygiene should be done in a balanced way. At the end of the day, this too will pass like the previous challenges and pandemics like the Spanish flu which was analogous to Corona.

Even though there’s still no foreseeability regarding when this virus will end however if we follow just these basic guidelines, we can at least stop the situation from getting out of control. Just like China from where the virus originated, the things are largely under control as all citizens have been following the guidelines given to them.

Ross Douthat, a political analyst wrote in The New York Times there are signs of what he calls “rational hope”, which is discrete from “reckless optimism”. It does not require, for instance, quickly lifting quarantines based on outlying predictions of low fatality rates. Rational hope accepts the reality of the situation but still looks for ways to get out of that situation by following proper instructions and guidelines to at least maintain the situation before it gets out of control. So, stick together and help each other!

We need to stand together united as one to face tough times.
United we stand, divided we fall.
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Maryam Shuaib Karim is a start-up writer whose main topics of interest deal with societal issues as well as trending topics that the youth can relate to like fashion, music, mental health issues, and students’ problems. Her interest in these topics and writing, in general, is because of her background in social sciences that has given her a broad base from which to approach many topics of general interest. She has also done community-based internships. Community-based work has played a role in broadening her perspective to all sociological problems faced by different members of the society, mostly underprivileged, the law of the country and its power to solve this kind of sociological problem by removing injustice through the power of law. Currently, she’s enrolled in Bahria University LLB program.

15 COMMENTS

  1. Informative article. It’s really important to think of ourselves and especially those around us in this difficult time.

  2. Six minutes well spent! It was nice to be made aware about all these other underlying problems caused by this pandemic.

  3. I had the pleasure of reading a couple of your writing pieces. You are doing a great job MashaAllah, keep it up!

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