Dad Stuff, Part 3: Schrodinger’s Cat and Coronavirus Response

I think we’re living through a real-life Schrodinger’s Cat scenario. But first…

There are only two types of conversations about the current Coronavirus situation (or “global pandemic” depending on which type of conversation you’re engaged in).

Conversation 1

“This is all such bullshit. It’s way overblown. Do you know how many people die from the flu each year? Or in car accidents? We have a car accident epidemic. Why don’t we all self-quarantine and stop driving? Plus, I hear the flu is worse. Kids don’t even get sick if they get COVID. Did you read about Tom Hanks? He says it’s like a really bad cold. I’m not canceling my vacation. I’m still going to work. I had friends over. Everyone who died is, like, 70 and older”

Conversation 2

“Better to be safe than sorry. I’m worried about my parents and my aunt. I don’t think I’m going to let my kids have playdates and get-togethers. I wash my hands every 30-minutes, drink water every twenty minutes, and I wiped down every surface in my home. We’re only going out when absolutely necessary. I called my elderly neighbor and asked if I could get him some groceries and I left them on his porch. My boss gave us permission to work from home, so I’m going to. I’ve been watching the daily Presidential task-force press conference.”

And so we have a true, real-life, Schrodinger’s Cat scenario. Is society freaking out for no reason? Shouldn’t we have been washing our hands and practicing self-quarantine procedures every year when the flu hits? This is just common sense? And it’s spreading anyway, despite our best efforts. Or, is it spreading less than it would have if we hadn’t canceled school for three weeks? We’ll never know. 

If schools and universities didn’t shut down, wouldn’t it just be a bunch of sick kids all passing it around? Like every day of every school year? Again, we’ll never know. 

We also don’t know if it really will only be a danger to the elderly and those with compromised health. 

Hence, the Schrodinger’s Cat scenario where we’ll never know which reality we’re carrying out by our decisions.


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