Quarantine Day 37

For everyone dying to go back to work I ask for extreme caution. You might actually die, or someone you know and love might actually die.

Somewhere between 25% and 50% of the people infected with COVID-19 have no symptoms. The US has not tested enough people to truly understand the scope and life cycle of this virus in the US. The refusal to provide universal testing has become a crime. We are four months into the pandemic and testing has almost halted in most places. The concerns of the capitalists’ economy have trumped science and public health.

I was notified again on April 18th, after a 4th round of COVID-19 tests, that I am still positive for the virus. I still have no symptoms. With the guidance of a talented and caring medical scientist we are going to take a different route before I am due for another retest for the virus. I will have tests to determine overall health, looking for markers of other possible systemic impacts from carrying the virus for more than 40 days to date.

I am a poster child for all the unknowns of OCVID-19. How long will someone carry the virus with no symptoms? How long will someone with virus be contagious? If there are shreds of virus clinging to the nasopharynx are they actually contagious or noncontagious? Science has no answer to any of these questions yet.

We as individuals and our communities have the potential to emerge from the pandemic more caring and more united, I am deeply grateful for the love and support I receive from my friends and neighbors every day. Dozens of people have offered to shop for and help with any other tasks. I get texts, emails, messages every day asking if anything is needed. It is beautiful.

My message is PLEASE, take this virus seriously! Wear masks around others, practice social distancing and stay home as much as possible. Without testing and re-testing, NO ONE, ABSOLUTELY NO ONE, can be sure they are not carriers of the virus.

The people being encouraged and funded to protest the safety rules governors have enacted are the Tea Party 2.0. Many of these people are so easily manipulated because our economy has and continues to harm them. There are barely even shreds of a safety net left in the US. Other countries are providing much more support for the people who cannot work while helping nonessential workers comply with stay at home orders. There are much better solutions to economic insecurity than becoming a pawn of the billionaire class who need workers to bolster their wealth while obscene levels of poverty and the destruction of the middle class in the US continues unabated.

Stay safe, stay masked, demand free universal testing, demand economic justice not crumbs of crumbs, keep others safe and let’s try to get through this pandemic with the fewest deaths and disabilities achievable. It is time for a Reunited States of America, of the people, by the people, and for the people.

Carol Miller is an Independent unable to vote in the New Mexico primary. She has been working on electoral reform and creating a more democratic electoral system since the 1990’s. Miller recommends that people newly awakened to the unfairness of the electoral system support Ballot Access News (http://ballot-access.org/), Coalition for Free and Open Elections (http://www.cofoe.org/), and Fair Vote (http://www.fairvote.org/).