Complacency: The most dangerous disease

Symptoms of COVID-19 are fever or chills, cough, difficulty breathing, loss of taste or smell, sore throat and above all else, complacency. Over 388,000 citizens have died in the U.S. and the daily average of new cases sits in the high teen-thousands. So, where are the masks? Where is the social distancing? Where is the care for human life?

Focusing on Wichita Falls, the positivity rate is 14% and within the week ending Jan. 15, there were 834 new cases calculated by the Wichita County Health Department. Narrowing it down to how these cases were contracted, we look at contact, close contact and community spread. Last week, community spread took the gold medal.

Community spread, according to the CDC, means “spread of an illness for which the source of infection is unknown.” Wichita Falls City Council issued a shelter-in-place order March 27. The city, at that time, had 26 active cases. The total active cases as of Jan. 15 is 2,329. Yet, walking around a grocery store, some still choose not to wear a mask or practice social distancing

It is because of the respiratory droplets produced when one talks or breathes, that the CDC recommends the use of a mask covering the mouth and nose. Social distancing also reduces the incidence of those respiratory droplets reaching another person.

To frequent places around the city with 2,329 active cases without a mask and within one’s personal space is negligent, irresponsible and shows no regard for another’s health or life.

On the other hand, MSU Texas students, faculty, and staff, are following guidelines to protect our community and the results are paying off. However, as long as Wichita Falls continues to be complacent in this pandemic, the efforts already taken to keep our community safe will need to continue.