Re: The real problem for restarting sports in high schools


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Posted by Let's Get Real on May 03, 2020 at 13:39:52:

In Reply to: Re: The real problem for restarting sports in high schools posted by essential workers at risk on May 03, 2020 at 11:52:44:

: : : : : :
: : : : : : : : Walt, do you think we should shut down the entire world economy for months if it were to save just one human life?

: : : : : : : That's a fine bit of reductio ad absurdum arguing you've got going there.

: : : : : : : Walt's Dog

: : : : : : Thanks. Feel free to answer the question.

: : : : : What exactly are you trying to prove with that question? World leaders make awful decisions that cost lives in nearly every crisis. If you're one person making the decision for a loved one, then it's worth it. That has no actual bearing on this situation.

: : : : : Some historians believe Truman dropped the A-bomb on Japan only to prevent Russia from being part of the negotiations for surrender, fearing Japan would be split in two as Germany was. This theory is supported by the Allied firebombing of Dresden, completely unnecessary to the advance on Berlin. The Allies chose to not aid the Red Army's offensive on the German capital with a more suitable target, even though it may have ended the war sooner and saved tend of thousands of Holocaust victims.

: : : : : Further supporting the theory is the Allied request for Russia to refrain from entering the Pacific War for three months after May 8th, which Stalin adhered to. The Cold War was underway before any treaties were signed.

: : : : You're getting off topic. Many of us are not at high risk to die from Coronavirus. There are plenty of ways to protect those who are at high risk without closing down our entire economy.

: : : : The question of how many lives we need to save in order to justify shutting down our entire economy is exactly what the issue is. You may not be comfortable with having it spelled out so coldly, but that is the issue at hand.

: : : : Do we all stop driving cars because someone was killed in an automobile accident? Or stop flying in airplanes because an airplane crashed? Do we forgo personal hygiene because someone slipped in the shower and died?

: : : : Life is about managing risk. We are all going to die eventually, it's just a matter of making smart decisions to preserve your life as long as you reasonably can. But what demands should one individual be able to make upon society as a whole in order to preserve their life? What about a small minority of people?

: : : : These are the questions that we should be answering. Should a parent who wants the best for their child - be that an education, or the opportunity to play sports - have to sacrifice all of that for the sake of saving a small handful of high risk people? Exactly what demands can the individual make of society?

: : :
: : : Still more germane than airplanes or cigarettes...airplanes don't kill more people exponentially as more fly, neither do cigarettes if you smoke more (and there are laws against where you can consume these).

: : : Shutting down the economy has drawbacks and will also destroy lives. But letting society continue as it was through a pandemic would be economic suicide. One concern out of many: who would drive buses and operate trains? NYC lost 41 transit workers in a few weeks, with nearly half of the workforce out sick in early April. The MTA was so shorthanded, train service was cut, leaving trains packed - even with most of NY staying home.

: : : New York also issued a DNR order to it's paramedics last month, patients who were "legally dead" would no longer be rushed to hospitals for life-saving procedures.

: : : Suppose NY stayed open this whole time...what do you say to people when 911 emergency stops sending ambulances for people dying from the virus when ventilators and PPE run out? Central Park has only so much space, and the Navy has a limited number of hospital ships. Doctors who hadn't yet graduated from medical school were called into service. 13k dead in the city as is, with at most 3% (a high estimate) of the city infected.

: : : Let's imagine life with no shutdown, where that number went from 3% to 30% over the past six weeks...and remember the most vulnerable include those who would be most exposed to the virus, not only the infirm. That means many essential workers (grocery/transit/police/fire/medics/food service) would be dying/sick/striking.

: : : I share the sentiment of wanting to re-open once the virus slows to a certain point (R0=0.5), but re-opening sooner than that, and letting the virus take it's course could lead to a breakdown of society. Unfortunately since sports aren't "essential", they carry a huge liability.

: : What I'm suggesting is that there are more than two options: Open and Closed. How about "Open, but high risk workers stay at home?" Doesn't that seem smarter than paying every family in America with taxpayer funds? How about "Open, but you wear a mask if you want to get on a bus?" There are plenty of options, so why aren't we exploring them?

: Sounds logical, but so many essential workers become high risk, as their jobs force them to come into close contact with a high volume of people every day. Even the healthy die when they get a large enough cumulative exposure to the virus, Italy lost over 60 doctors to this in a couple months. By November, there should at least be proven treatments for this virus, and the debate to stay open won't involve condemning hundreds of thousands more to death. But the world was caught with it's pants down in February when this novel virus (the novelty is the problem) spread out of China, and a drastic shutdown was the only way to avoid even more chaos.

Italy has had just under 29K deaths...compared to a population of over 60 million. That is, less 0.05% of their population has died from the coronavirus. Italy has one of the oldest populations in the world, with 23% of their population 65 or older which is one of the reasons why they have been so adversely affected.

5 people out of 10,000 is a tragedy, but is it a reason to shut down for months? No. Not when we are able to control the spread of the virus by behaving responsibly, limiting contact, washing our hands, self-quarantining if sick or at high risk, and wearing a mask. The money that we are paying millions of people to stay home and watch Netflix could be put to better use setting up care programs for the sick or at-risk, or researching vaccines, or hiring additional health care workers.


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