Ed Yong: Why America Became Numb to COVID Deaths

Ed Yong

“If 1,000 deaths a day is not acceptable, what threshold would be? The extreme answer—none!—is impractical, because COVID has long passed the point where eradication is possible, and because all interventions carry at least some cost.”

In an op-ed for The Atlantic, Ed Yong, award-winning science writer for The Atlantic and a Phil Lind Initiative speaker for our 2022 series, posits that because tragedy has become routine, people are now responding less to deaths. Moreover, he incorporates quantitative evidence to illustrate the immense loss that the United States have endured due to COVID-19 in addition to showing how the pandemic has affected certain socio-economic and high-risk groups.

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