525,600 Minutes

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Big numbers are difficult for people to get their heads around. How many people is half a million, anyways?

COVID-19 killed 516,000 individuals in the United States

Here’s some ways to comprehend that number:

It’s as if the entire population of Atlanta disappeared. (Or Toledo or Grand Rapids)

Consider losing someone whose name you know every minute for a whole year.

Think what it would be like if we no longer had a single fast-food cook in the country.

Suppose we no longer had even one postal worker in the country.

Imagine if all the visible stars fell from the sky. And then multiply the darkness by 100.

Then there’s this tweet from Dan Rather’s, which made it hard for me to swallow:

Dan Rather @DanRather It’s impossible to comprehend 500,000 deaths. I read about those who have died. Look into their eyes in pictures. I start with 1 person, then 2, then more, imagining a chain of pain so long it feels unending. To those who’ve lost loved ones, I send deep condolences…

Tears fell when I listened to this song from the musical, “Rent.”

It may be hard to believe, but we’re not out of the woods yet.

Last year on this date, three people in this country died from COVID-19. Yesterday, 1,897 met the same fate. We collectively let out a sigh of relief because the numbers are going down. The last time the deaths were close to yesterday’s was in early December.

Today several states are lifting all restriction. Maybe we don’t need restrictions anymore. Maybe the majority of us know and practice: Wear a mask; Watch your distance; Wash your hands; Work together.

After all, most of us don’t need to be told to drive on the right side of the road, wear a seatbelt, obey the speed limit, stop at red lights, etc. Oh wait…there are penalties for not doing those things.

I’m trying to suspend disbelief and think positively. My state vaccinated a little over 16% of the population. We’re, maybe, a third of the way toward herd immunity. What’s that saying?

With the will of God and the grace of our Neighbors.

Joe Biden’s mother

Here’s a link to a bunch of data about COVID-19. It helped me get my head around the numbers: https://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=us+deaths+from+covid&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8