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4 Ways That the Coronavirus Has Brought on More Reckless Behavior

Written by on August 19, 2020 in Hazards, Issues & Diseases with 0 Comments

If you go back to what the world looked like a year ago, it’s almost unrecognizable when you glance at it today. Everywhere you look, there are individuals wearing masks. More people look anxious or frightened.

There are also constant news reports about political upheaval and strife. Part of that is because of the upcoming presidential election, but much of it has to do with the rising death toll in this country. Approximately 170,000 people are dead, and those numbers show no signs of slowing.

It’s fascinating to see some of the different ways people have changed because of the pandemic. Let’s look at some of the more reckless and irrational behaviors right now.

Reckless Driving Behavior

You probably already know some reckless driving behavior examples. For instance, there are things like:

  • Speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Changing lanes without signaling

There was lots of that going on before the pandemic. However, it seems as though the coronavirus has increased reckless driving behaviors.

At first, there appears to be no logical reason why this should be so. If you think about it for a moment, though, it starts to make a little more sense.

Everyone feels stress right now. Many of them have lost jobs, or they’re looking at reduced hours. They might worry about eviction or the bank repossessing their car.

All of this has led some people into “end of the world” type thinking. They’re behaving more recklessly out on the road because they’re under so much pressure.

There are valid reasons why some individuals feel nervous or scared right now, but that doesn’t excuse inappropriate driving that makes collisions and injuries more likely.

Violence Against Store Employees

There is also a rash of violence against store employees going on. The most common cause is that the employee will demand that an individual put a mask on if they’re going to come onto the premises.

That individual might then decide to:

  • Freak out and attack the store employee
  • Launch some invective at them

The employee is just attempting to follow the store policy or the policy that the state or city’s government set in place.

Some people claim that they can’t wear masks because of some vague medical reason. That is almost never truly the case. Even if someone has asthma or respiratory difficulties, wearing a mask for a few minutes while doing some shopping is hardly likely to harm them.

It has reached the point where some stores have hired security guards to protect the employees from incensed would-be customers who will try to push their way inside without a mask.

Violence Against Other Citizens

Then, there is the separate issue of people being violent toward other individuals with masks on. You can trace this back to the whole mask-wearing politicization problem.

Various public officials have taken stands on either side of the mask debate. Depending on your political affiliation, you might land on either side of the issue as well.

If someone does not choose to wear a mask while walking around outside, then there are very few states or cities where the government is going so far as to force them.

There are some people, though, who get so incensed when they see someone else wearing a mask that they feel the need to scream at them or attack them.

This is nothing less than deranged behavior on the part of the individuals who feel the need to do it. If you think differently about mask-wearing than someone else, no one is forcing you to wear one. An exception would be if you try to go into a privately-owned business like a grocery store, hotel, etc.

If you see someone wearing a mask, that’s their business. It’s not okay to attack them or yell at them. For all you know, they might have an immunocompromised condition, and they need that mask to save their life.

Spreading of Online Misinformation

Another reckless behavior that’s on the rise during the Covid-19 outbreak is people spreading dangerous misinformation online.

That misinformation might have something to do with the virus itself, such as its origin. It could have something to do with masks and what they do to you. It may be about things like the vaccines that various countries are developing.

The thing about social media is that it can help people stay in touch with one another. It can also alert people about very serious matters, like when governments are committing human rights violations around the globe. In those respects, it can be very useful.

In other ways, it can be a cesspool, and that’s become even more the case during the pandemic. Some people insist on spreading baseless rumors that don’t have a shred of evidence to back them up.

An example would be something like the far right-wing QAnon conspiracy theory. It’s a loosely-affiliated and wide-ranging idea that the so-called deep state is operating a Satan-worshipping pedophilia ring.

It’s so absurd that it’s laughable, and yet some prominent government officials seem to think that it’s real. It is the epitome of reckless behavior to allow the proliferation of these sorts of rumors, and yet some people have no problem talking about them as if they were fact.

With so much uncertainty in the world, this is a time when some people are going to behave more recklessly and irrationally than ever before. It is up to each one of us to take a deep breath and try to govern our lives with tolerance, civility, and clear-headedness.

You cannot control what anyone else does. Everyone will formulate their own opinions about what’s real and what isn’t, and arguing with them about these things is seldom productive.

All you can do is monitor your mental state and try to keep things in perspective. It’s a tough year, but things won’t be this way forever. If you try to remain optimistic and block out the negativity, then you should be fine.

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