I didn’t see 2020 coming, yikes, what the hell was that?!
Whatever you believe it’s been a very disruptive and scary time and we have all been affected by it. The terrible divide it has caused between us, the fear of a virus, the fear of those in charge, the tsunami of information, both accurate and deliberately misleading.
All of us have been touched by this and now more than ever we need to be kind to each other. We need to be understanding and listen to each other and remember that whichever side you fall on, we are all scared.
We have no idea what the future holds and have far more questions than answers, no wonder we are all struggling to catch our breath.
One thing we can all agree on is that none of us have ever seen the world stop in the way it has over the last 10 months.
It has touched all of us
Most of us will at least know someone who has had the virus, personally I know quite a few, although I haven’t caught it yet myself and judging by how rough some of my friends have been, I really don’t fancy getting it.
Some friends had very mild symptoms and seem to have recovered fully, others were extremely ill, some were hospitalised and very sadly, two of my neighbours died.
Both of my neighbours were older and with underlying health conditions, although this doesn’t make it any less tragic, I thought I’d mention it for the sake of clarity.
Worst case scenario
The jury is still out on the exact mortality rate of Covid, with some saying it is 0.1% and others saying around the 1% mark. Hopefully we will have clarity in the future, but for now lets go worst case scenario and operate under the assumption it is the latter. It still seems a very low percentage but for perspective, if we all caught it this will mean around 700,000 people in the UK will die of it, not a number you can shrug off.
Of course there are the possible long term health effects, this is a very new virus so we just don’t know. Many people are still struggling with “long covid” which, according to the NHS, include extreme fatigue, shortness of breath and chest pain among others, for the full list please see: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/long-term-effects-of-coronavirus-long-covid/
Because of this, rightly or wrongly, our worlds have been turned upside down. We have lost jobs or much of our income, we can’t eat out, go shopping with the family, visit friends, be with sick and elderly relatives. We are getting fined for going for a walk in the forest, we are suspicious of strangers, we can’t hug each other, all we can do is work (if we can), and sit fearfully indoors. We are dying, not just of Covid, but because we are too scared to go to the hospital or our cancer treatments have been put on hold, we are committing suicide at an alarming rate.
And as awful as all of this is, it is NOTHING in comparison to what we are facing if we don’t change the way we do things.
Bird flu, commonly known as H5N1, is a highly pathogenic avian influenza that is deadly to most birds. It is transmitted directly from birds to humans but as yet, cannot easily transmit from one human to another.
However, if a human, or another susceptible animal, gets infected with bird flu and human flu simultaneously, the two viruses could swap genes, and H5N1 could mutate into a form that easily infects us. Since the first human case in 1997, H5N1 has killed nearly 60% of the people who have been infected.
This means if bird flu is our next pandemic and we all catch it, nearly 40,000,000 people in the UK will die of it. Even more terrifying is that we have bird flu outbreaks on farms in the UK right now. WHY IS THIS NOT ALL OVER THE MEDIA?
Instead they are talking about how those who don’t want to be vaccinated for a disease with a 1% mortality rate are dangerous and will be responsible for deaths, while still discussing the size of the turkey they had for Christmas! This is not journalism, this is sensationalism, they need to be held accountable and to do their jobs. They should be educating the public and demanding the closure of all animal farming facilities immediately.
The truth is it is not a matter of if, but of when H5N1 mutates the way covid-19 did, (that’s right, remember the reason we are in this mess in the first place is because we insist on exploiting animals), and will become easily transmissible from human to human, and that will be world changing.
Bird flu spreads like wildfire in birds kept in the cramped, unsanitary conditions of UK farms and from there it is spread to the farm workers via contact with their faeces or secretions from their nose or mouth.
I’m not even going to touch on the unimaginable horror of the hurried, mass slaughter of the birds on these contaminated farms.
The irony is we get sick because of our treatment of animals, so the sick animals are killed, then we kill more animals trying to find cures for ourselves, all the while not learning a thing. We continue with the same behaviours and it is always the animals that suffer the most.
I know what many of you are thinking, she is Vegan and wants us to stop farming animals, (and you are right, I do, please stop), so don’t take my word for it, a quick internet search is all it will take to show I am speaking the truth.
What can we do
Our world has virtually stopped because of a virus that, arguably, kills around 1% of the people it infects. I’m not downplaying it, that is still a staggering amount of people, I’m just asking you to consider the total devastation if that number were 60%.
We have established that the media aren’t talking about it, our leaders aren’t talking about it, the farmers most certainly aren’t talking about it, so once again it is up to us.
We have to stop supporting animal farming, while there is money to be made from it, people will do it. We have to use our voices and make the media and politicians listen, make this a conversation everyone is having. This is a guaranteed time bomb and we have no idea when it is going to go off.
I have no secret agenda here, I’ve spent the best part of two decades crying, screaming, begging people to stop harming animals for the animals sake. Now I’m asking you to do it for all our sakes.
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