“Coronavirus is a great moral drama taking place before our eyes. And the script has not yet been written.” By Roge Karma Apr 10, 2020, 7:30am EDT
What are the social conditions that made us vulnerable to coronavirus?”
“We’ve created a different kind of world — the world of globalization. That’s very different from the age of industrialization, and it creates different vulnerabilities. Globalization encompasses enormous population growth. We’re now approaching 8 billion people as a species, and that is accompanied by an enormous density of population.
We also have a myth of infinite economic growth although the planet has finite resources. And that forms our relationship with the environment. We’re constantly invading and destroying great swaths of animal habitat. That brings us into contact with animals that we didn’t encounter very often in the past. Therefore, we are exposed to the infinite reservoirs of microbes that they carry and there is a spillover of diseases we never encountered before. Avian flu is a spillover from wild fowl. Ebola is a spillover from bats. MERS is the same story. And coronavirus today is once more a spillover via the wet markets in a place like Wuhan [the Chinese city where the coronavirus outbreak originated].
We’ve also created mass air travel — millions of people travel on a daily basis. So a disease that breaks out in Jakarta in the morning can easily begin its course in London or Paris or Mexico City in the evening. Those links make us enormously vulnerable to diseases that can travel on airplanes with us and then begin fresh in our overcrowded, teeming cities.”