With the ongoing COVID Pandemic sweeping across America and the globe, we are, no doubt, watching an historical event play out before our very eyes. We therefore have the opportunity to see “history in the making,” so to speak. To this end, I want you to write a one-page reflection paper on the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic. This is not an intellectual undertaking as much as a personal undertaking. In the paper, you should address how the pandemic and the resulting response in an effort to contain it has affected you, your family, your friends, your community, your nation and the world. In doing so, you will be creating a primary source for future historians to use when they look back at this event to try to summarize and explain its impact on us, in 2020 C.E. Global infection statistics and deaths will be easy to quantify; political responses will be clear through officially archived documentation; economic impacts will be seen in the measurements of GDP and GNP before and after the event. However, social historians are often left to “fill in the blanks” in this historical record with letters, journals, and other personal narratives. Your task is to produce the type of document that will allow them to do that. Therefore, there is no “right or wrong” way to do this assignment. It is simply an exercise in producing alternative historical records, from your personal perspective, that can compliment and fill in the gaps in the narrative history of this event.
When 2019 ended, people did not think that things would change so fast by the beginning of 2020 due to the emergence and rapid spreading of the new strain of coronavirus (COVID-19). When the first case of the disease was recorded in the country, the government reacted immediately by imposing strict measures to curtail the spreading and control the highly infectious diseases. The government imposed economic lockdown and social distancing policies, such as stay-home, to avoid social interactions that would cause the uncontrolled spreading of infections (Barnett-Howell and Mobarak 1). After the government announced the measures, our school was closed, and many people were forced to work from home. I spent most of the time at home because of the fear of the pandemic. Other family members were locked at home due to the government measures and the fear of infection. My parents worked from home most of the time and only went out when necessary, such as to get groceries or to seek medical care. My friends were also locked up in their homes, making it extremely difficult to see one another. We could only communicate via phone and video calls, which was possible due to the development of advanced technology and applications, such as Skype and Zoom. Unfortunately, some of my neighbors lost their jobs, especially those who worked in restaurants and physical stores. Many suffered from depression due to the loss of employment and hopelessness, while at the same time hospitals were overwhelmed by the increasing number of patients. Nationally and internationally, economies suffered, and significant social issues arose, such as increased domestic violence and rates of suicide. The world has experienced a high level of hopelessness, mostly since the world remained unsure when the pandemic would end.
Barnett-Howell, Zachary, and Ahmed Mushfiq Mobarak. “The Benefits and Costs of Social Distancing in Rich and Poor Countries.” arXiv preprint arXiv:2004.04867 (2020).