Social Distancing, in Regard to Which I Commit Rank Heresy

By April 26, 2020 Commentary

The public health experts are like a bunch of holy-rollers, writhing around on the floor of their church, arms raised to heaven and chanting “social distancing, social distancing, masks, masks,”.  Never one to be concerned about conventional wisdom, and raised on the value of challenging everything, including your own biases, and figuring out the facts and logical conclusions using your own brain, I won’t be singing from the same hymnal.

Here is my starting point.  This virus is stopped in only one of two ways.  It is eradicated or it stops finding enough hosts to maintain transmissibility.  I would like to hear the serious argument for eradication of such a widespread, highly infectious agent.  That leaves enough people being infected and developing immunity to re-infection, or being aided in developing immunity by a vaccine, so that transmissibility drops to a very low level.  I would also like to hear the serious argument that we can economically, or socially, sustain this level of economic and social lockdown until there is a vaccine, which is still a dubious prospect in any event.

The most likely and best way that we are going to stop the virus is by building up natural immunity.  It also offers the best protection for those few groups that are especially susceptible to the virus.  The sooner we get a large percent of the population with natural immunity, the less likely it is that the vulnerable become infected.

I am not the only one thinking like this.  (Medrxiv Paper)

And I have a human dimension to my recommendation as well.  A couple of weeks ago (or was it years) I wrote a post called The Way We Life Now; a little sappy but basically a lament about losing the essential humanness of our existence.  Do we really all want to walk around wearing masks, afraid to be close to one another, afraid to hug, to touch, to laugh too hard?  We are very social creatures, and the price of so-called social distancing is even more loneliness and purposelessness than already exists.  That is not a world I want to live in and there is no reason why we should allow that to be dictated to us by the high priests of the public health religion.

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