by Cam Lawrence
The youth of our country (and world) have been known as rebellious and head-strong. These attributes have led to some amazing things: Greta Thunberg being an advocate about climate change, Malala Yousafzi being an activist for female education and countless other well-known activist teenagers.
Youth in our own school have done outstanding things: a group of students starting INSPIre, student advocacy for the founding of MoSAic and the many students of St. Mary’s who have embraced their own independent voice. We are the future, no matter how gloomy this future currently looks.
It is no question that we as youth often choose not to hear the advice of those who are older than us. This independence is sometimes positive, but can also often be dangerous. We have been advised by parents, grandparents, mayors, government officials, celebrities and even the president to remain in our homes in a self-quarantine to avoid the spread of this terrifying virus. This virus — which we are, ironically, sick of hearing about in the news, seeing people joke about on TikTok and fearing that we will be its next victim — is not going to go away easily.
At the beginning of the outbreak, it was believed that older people were more disposed to getting the virus than young people; however, in Tennessee, the majority of those infected are 21-30 years old. We need to see and understand that this virus is not going to stay away from us.
Most of us have not experienced something like this virus. We are in shock. We think that, just because we are young and healthy, we can’t contract COVID-19. But here is the unfortunate news for anyone who is under the age of 30:
You can get this virus.
Celebrities have cautioned the youth of the world to quarantine. Colton Underwood, 27 year old "Bachelor" star, now has the virus.
“I have been following all of the social distancing rules since last week,” he said over an Instagram video. “My symptoms started a few days ago, I was tested and just received my results today. For anyone out there that is hesitant to self-quarantine ... Please do yourself and your loved ones a favor and stay home. We will all beat this and come out stronger on the other side.”
I have been in quarantine for a week. This means if I have left my house, it is because I am driving around in my car with my family and not getting out of the car. If we want to go out to eat, we pick up our food. I have not been closer than 10 feet to my best friend in two weeks now.
We are living through a pandemic, a national emergency, and a very isolating time. It’s okay to be in shock, but it is not okay to make your shock an excuse to be in contact with others with whom you could transmit or from whom you could receive the virus. If you are lonely, FaceTime a friend. A run or walk outside might brighten your spirits. To get past this, we are all going to have to sacrifice. It’s going to be hard, but sometimes, doing the hardest things are what it will take to stay healthy and survive this pandemic.