The COVID debacle reminds me of AIDS. It does so much that I got out the definitive book about the AIDS crisis and am reading it again. Called And the Band Played On by Randy Shilts, this definitive book reported on the early research into the virus that eventually erupted and killed millions. They were mostly gay Americans. COVID early on killed a lot of the elderly. Now COVID is more widespread but is still present and keeps coming back. The vaccines have proved mostly and basically ineffective so the situation keeps requiring additional boosters. This is what happened during the AIDS era when the media reported even more deaths from AIDS almost daily.
I found page 233 of this book especially relevant. It reported on the massive research that had gone on up to that point that had resulted in neither an arrest of the virus nor a cure. Many so called experts like Selma Dritz had done massive research and thought they understood what was happening, but on February 2nd of an early 1983 date “the number of AIDS cases in the United States exceeded 1,000″, the epidemic was only 19 months old and had stricken 1, 025 nationally. It had affected 501 in New York State alone and 221 in California. It had killed 394 Americans and nearly one in four cases had been reported to federal officials over the past two months alone. More than 100 had died in the past eight weeks. Since December, two more foreign countries had reported their first AIDS cases, putting the epidemic officially in 16 nations worldwide.” The man who started this virus was Patient Zero, a flight attendant by the name of Gaetan Dugas. He was still under no restrictions. Now 40 million people have died from AIDS globally.
We still do not know who started COVID definitely. The Chinese are suspected but are in denial and deaths are way down there. The situation changes hourly, it seems. Overall, the USA has reported 79 million cases of COVID and deaths have topped 960,000 although new cases are dropping. However, there has been an 82% increase in cases of COVID in Washington State as of today and there are currently 12, 737 cases of it here. The number of new cases changes daily, so no one knows for sure what will happen in the future. This has reportedly been a bad year for flu and respiratory infections so no one knows what will happen tomorrow. Meanwhile, AIDS continues to kill globally and some people are reluctant to travel due to both viruses that impact our lives.