So, it’s finally unavoidable – I swore not to bring the pandemic into my blog, but I’m left with little choice.
Firstly, a disclaimer: I am not a doctor, nor am I medically or scientifically qualified in any way. I may very well be misinformed about the issue, and if this turns out to be true, I will add an amendment to this base of this post. I will not delete the false information, as I believe that would be disingenuous and that’s not what I want for this blog
From my (potentially incorrect) understanding of this virus, it’s somewhat akin to a particularly nasty strain of the flu, and is usually only life-threatening to individuals who are immuno-compromised (weakened immune system).
Although, I’ve never heard of a flu causing diarrhea, so can someone please explain to me the toilet roll thing?
But that’s beside the point. The main thing I’d like to address today is the reaction of the general populus. In my local area, there are 4 stores within walking distance (there’s more, but I’m talking superstores, convenience stores, etc – weekly shopping type deal). One of which is a Morrisons, and a fairly large one at that. Another is an Aldi, fairly small but still classified a supermarket. The third is a local one-stop. They have all been devastated by people stockpiling inordinate amounts of food and general goods – what are you doing?
Firstly, some of the main things that people are hoarding are perishables or short-shelflife products (bread, milk, etc). All your doing there is wasting good food. Your going to have more than you need, some of it will go off and you’ll dispose of it.
Meanwhile, some of the immuno-compromised people who generally can’t leave their house often, have been beaten out by these hoarders. So they have a compromised immune system, and now they may be underfed as well as all the local stores are either essentially empty or in the case of my local OneStop outright closed because there small store was reportedly only able to hold enough stock for a few hours where the same amount would usually last around 3 days.
However, you’ll note I said 4 stores, but I’ve only talked about 3 – that’s because my local Asda deserves special attention. It is supposed to be a 24/7 store, except it closes from 12am Sunday to 8am when it re-opens, closes again at 4pm the same day and doesn’t re-open until 12am Monday. I’m not entirely sure how that classifies as 24/7 but anyways, besides that – they have now decided that they will only open 7am to 11pm every day now, and they’ve elected not to sell certain products for a period due to violence breaking out over the little remaining stock at the end of a day. Tesco are apparently doing this, too – although I haven’t seen it for myself.
So, I ask these stores, and I particularly ask the hoarders, what exactly are people who need food to survive meant to do whilst you’re throwing away loaves of bread because they ran out of date before you could eat them?
I don’t really understand the logic or influence behind any of the response people have had – and I kind of hope that it turns out I’m missing something or I’m misinformed somehow.
This post, up to now has been rather opinionated and I am fully aware that somebody will see this in the future and will be utterly triggered by what I had to say. But I’d like to wrap up by saying this:
The best thing we can do during a global pandemic is not to panic like this. The best thing we could do is to share the resources we have available to those who need them. Think of it this way, if you must – the tables may, one day, be turned and you may need someone else’s help – are they going to help you in the future if you don’t help them now?
Alone we can move stones, but together we can move mountains.
Closing note: I’d like to commend Amazon (of all companies) for their recent decision to support people all over the UK and US by suspending delivery of non-essential items to ensure it has plenty of space in it’s warehouses for groceries, toiletries and other essential items in a time when superstores have become essentially useless.
A YouTube channel I follow (and recommend you do to!) called Kurzgesagt has just released a really informative video about COVID-19 that I think sums up the situation quite nicely:
I’m not affiliated in any way with Kurzgesagt or this particular video.