COVID-19’s Friends

Kaylene Starks

     COVID-19 has been around for roughly three years now and is still having a major impact on many of our lives with the newly discovered Omicron variant. This Omicron variant is very similar to the common flu, giving similar minor symptoms. However, this revelation can lead to COVID-19’s extended stay, forcing us to take extra precautions for our safety.

     The symptoms of Omicron are nausea, coughing, a loss of smell/taste and even hair loss. Much like the original COVID-19 virus, Omicron is able to spread rapidly and over one million cases of Omicron have been discovered. Although cases of Omicron are popping up all around the world, there have been particularly large outbreaks that have taken place in California, reaching a massive total of six million cases, shattering the record for cases. As a result, schools and teachers are becoming increasingly strict when it comes to enforcing COVID-19 guidelines within the school environment. Before the discovery of the Omicron variant, medical experts and scientists found the Delta variant. It contains more intense symptoms and is more likely to cause a panic than the original COVID-19.

     “I think it’s getting pretty serious. I recently tested positive for COVID [but] I didn’t have severe symptoms. But, this is definitely serious and will possibly shut down the school. Basketball games have already begun rescheduling because of the other team’s positive tests,” said senior Jeremiah Calhoun.

      There has been increased controversy surrounding the topic of COVID-19 vaccinations. Many medical professionals across the world recommend that everybody receives their vaccination and booster shots in a collective attempt to halt the virus. Some refuse to do so as they believe it impedes upon their constitutional freedom. There have been several occurrences of people utilizing controversial methods in an attempt to either enforce the vaccination upon others or defame the research and recommendations of the aforementioned medical professionals. An example of this would be science teacher Laura Russo who was arrested for giving her 17 year old student the COVID-19 vaccine in New York City. 

     The updates of COVID-19 constantly have rapid changes and new discoveries. Hospitals have recently been having a shortage of staff members because they have either contracted the virus or there were too many patients to care for. Because of this, local businesses  are forced to shut down or close, causing them to rethink their strategies for safety and defense against the current threat. But on the bright side, on January 10th, the ABC news channel declared that their experts found that the US is near the peak of Omicron cases, meaning we should begin to see a decrease in numbers of those infected.