Y’all know this stuff. Everyone should know it.

This is probably already very clear to anyone who might read this, but…

  • Almost nobody you come in contact with (unless you are in a medical setting) has COVID-19 and is currently contagious. However, there is no way to tell who has it and who doesn’t. Almost anyone might have it.
  • If you do come in contact with someone who has COVID-19, almost everyone who is currently contagious is only mildly contagious. However, there is no way to tell who is a ‘super-spreader’ that is infecting dozens and dozens of people and who is only ordinarily contagious. Almost anyone might be enormously contagious.
  • The above includes you.
  • Almost everyone who contracts this illness either gets better quickly or never gets sick at all. However, there is no way to tell who will die, who will be severely ill for a long time, who will have long-term chronic problems and who will be fine.
  • This also includes you.
  • Humans are very bad at risk assessment.
  • This also includes you.
  • Therefore, considering the costs and benefits, what makes sense is for you to follow the ‘cautious’ guidelines—wear a mask whenever possible, always wear a mask inside unless you are in your own home with only your household present, maintain as much physical distance as is feasible both inside and outside, minimize your time spent indoors (other than your own household of course). Essentially, treat everyone including yourself as if we were all superspreaders and every case were severe.
  • That’s really hard to do, both logistically and emotionally.
  • The pandemic doesn’t give a shit if it’s hard to do.

Tolerabimus quod tolerare debemus,

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