By Kennedy Shelley
If you had to give a date to the start of the national lockdown, it would be March 13.
That was the official declaration of a national emergency.
Without any evidence that COVID-19 was a danger to healthy people, most of the nation was locked up, millions of jobs were lost, and people were kept physically away from each other.
What are the real costs of this lockdown? There are economic costs to be sure, but are there other costs to the social fabric which also should be counted?
The numbers have been trickling in and it is clear that the virus is about as dangerous as the annual seasonal flu outbreak. That’s not to say it’s nothing, but it is not exactly a plague either.
It is expected that nearly 50,000 will die from the coronavirus, but that number is murky because most of the people who die have several other factors which certainly contribute to an early death.
The virus has been politicized and big medicine is trying to find a way to attribute nearly every death as coronavirus related because they have financial incentives to do so, which makes the exact death toll very hard to determine.
But what price have we paid for the lockdown of healthy people?
Calls to suicide hotlines are skyrocketing. It has shot up over 8000%.
This is not surprising, in 2012 Dr. Stuckler studied the cost of unemployment and found that there was 2-3 times increase in risk of suicide for each percentage increase in unemployment.
Since we have had a surge of a 20% increase in unemployment, we could expect to nearly double the number of suicides in the US if this government induced crisis continues.
During the 2007 economic downturn where unemployment was getting close to 10%, there were an estimated extra 5000 suicides.
That number could be double, just because of the widespread economic uncertainty.
This does not take into account the government inflicted social isolation.
In Michigan, the despotic governor banned families from getting together. Social isolation is a cause of suicide, not the solution.
CHILD AND DOMESTIC ABUSE
People with mental disorders are just not receiving treatment. People who have been receiving support and help with anger management have been cut off from their support groups.
And there is a very definite link between economic uncertainty and domestic violence. Chicago reports an increase of 18% in the number of domestic violence calls.
If there was a history of previous domestic abuse, then the victims are forced to shelter at home with their abuser, because there is no alternative.
While the virus will go away, these scars will be permanent.
AIDS AND SUBSTANCE ABUSE
During the Greek economic crisis of 2010, the number of AIDS cases spiked. Almost all of it was related to increased use of intravenous drugs.
People need people to cope with the stress of life. When they lose the support of the church, friends and family they too often comfort themselves with drugs and alcohol.
The results are more societal and individual decay.
While it is almost impossible to put exact numbers on the number of people affected by COVID-19 infections or the number of people who will be hurt by the economic fallout of the virus, there is no doubt there will be high personal costs, many of which will be more permanent than exposure to the virus.