Really cannot emphasize this enough: no parties right now. No parties unless they happen via video chat. No going to parties, no throwing parties, and for the love of all the beans in your pantry, no “coronavirus parties.” This simply isn’t the time.
All of that may seem intuitive, given how many people across the country have been issued stay-at-home orders. Such imperatives help slow the spread of a global pandemic that has totally upended daily life, but they only work if all of us follow instructions, and naturally, not everyone is. In Kentucky, for example, a group of twenty-somethings recently held a “coronavirus party,” and according to Governor Andy Beshear, one attendee subsequently tested positive for COVID-19.
“This is the part where I, the person that tells everyone to be calm, have to remain calm myself,” Beshear said on Tuesday. “This one makes me mad, and it should make you mad.”
“No more of these, anywhere, statewide, ever, for any reason,” he added.
Although Kentucky residents are not currently required to remain indoors, Beshear has banned mass gatherings and declared a state of emergency. At time of writing, the state had recorded 163 confirmed coronavirus cases and four deaths. Beshear did not provide details as to when and where the party happened, nor did he say how many revelers attended. He did, however, give his constituents a stern talking-to.
“Anyone who goes to something like this may think that they are indestructible, but it’s somebody else’s loved one that they’re going to hurt,” Beshear explained. “We are battling for the health and even the lives of our parents and our grandparents, and don’t be so callous as to intentionally go to something and expose yourself to something that can kill other people. We ought to be much better than that.”
Initial reports indicated that people in their 20s and 30s stood at relatively low risk of falling seriously ill or dying from COVID-19, but as it turns out, that’s not exactly true. What has always been evident, however, is that younger, healthy people who contract coronavirus can — and do — pass it to more vulnerable populations, ramping up the death rate. With that in mind, everyone who can stay home right now, should stay home right now. Please, just socially exhaust yourself on Zoom instead!