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Opinion columnist Audrey Kesler encourages readers to stay in and practice social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Opinion

We are living through a pandemic, and our lives are transitioning online as social contact becomes increasingly limited.

The constant posts and tweets about the COVID-19 virus and what we should be doing is the only thing we are talking about. President Trump has asked us to self-quarantine, the University of Kansas has asked students not to return to campus, and other countries are going into quarantine or even lockdown. 

The U.S. is slowly shutting down, but many people are still going out. The 20 to 29-year-olds believe they are entitled to go out to bars, concerts and other large gatherings because they are the ones who “won’t be affected” by the virus. We cannot be that dumb.

I am genuinely shocked people have decided to continue partying in Miami and other hot spring break spots during this time. I get wanting to party with friends and enjoy what might be the last time you all see each other. But is it worth it in the long run? 

Gen Z needs to realize we are living in a serious pandemic. We need to realize the importance of staying home. I know — it feels like high school again living under your parents' roof. It sucks, I will admit. But would you rather put other people’s lives at risk or wait out this pandemic to keep everyone safe? 

Getting everyone in the U.S. to quarantine is impossible. So you might think to yourself, “Well other people are going out and doing stuff, so I should be able to do that too.” No. I'm sorry, but no. Don’t be selfish! I know it's not as fun to FaceTime your friends when you could be on campus vibing with them in person. But if we all do our part and stay home, we can at least be a part of something bigger. And practicing social distancing is a great start!

Taking everything online will take some adjusting, not just with school, but with anything including human contact. I want more than ever right now to hang out with my friends, hear their laughs and give them hugs. But I would rather see them virtually than risk giving them the virus and vice versa. 

Opinion columnist Jeffrey Birch discusses artificial shortages amid the coronavirus outbreak, and he encourages readers to prevent panic by discerning between what they think they need and what they actually need. 

I recently had to help my friend pack his room to move out. We listened to music, made some chicken nuggets and spent time together before we parted. It was genuinely sadder than when we parted ways my freshman year for the summer.

This whole situation truly sucks. But we all have to understand it is not the end of the world, and we have to stay safe and remain healthy if we want to see our best friends again.

So what will you ever do in your godforsaken childhood home? Have pets? They won’t get sick — play with them, give them attention, and take them on a short walk. Board games? I know it sounds lame — but come on, admit that you low key missed those days of playing board games. Color or paint? It can help relieve some stress or anxiety you might be having. 

The best advice I can give is to take this quarantine as an opportunity to focus on you and ways to keep yourself motivated. There are big things coming up in the future that will need our attention, like *cough* the election *cough.*

Most importantly, be responsible with your choices, stay indoors as much as you can, and drink an Emergen-C once a day. Stay safe Jayhawks, I will see you soon!

Audrey Kesler is a sophomore from Prairie Village studying strategic communications.