Scary Consequences of Partying during COVID


Photo provided by Katie Mohr

Katie Mohr, Business Manager

COVID-19 cases have been growing at staggering rates since Fall has made its appearance. Many experts expected this increase as a result of colder temperatures and the arrival of flu season, but I think the growth comes from something much more asinine. As time in quarantine continues to draw out, it is obvious that people, especially teenagers, are blatantly ignoring guidelines set by health officials. Halloween 2020 was a perfect example of the reckless behavior so many teenagers in Forsyth County continue to display as the pandemic surges on.

There were numerous parties thrown on Halloween, as well as the Friday before: just check instagram.  Kids in Forsyth County were not shy about posting their activities all over social media. Countless posts showed people dressed in costumes, not socially distanced, and not wearing masks. It’s obvious that many are heedless of the distress and grief that this pandemic is putting on families, and their actions show clear disrespect to those who are suffering.

Many claim that life should not be spent living in fear, and that we shouldn’t let the pandemic keep us from living our lives anymore. However, that thought process does not negate that fact that we are still in a pandemic. Wishful thinking that events and daily routines can just go back to the way they were is a thought dripping with privilege. It’s been eight months and people, teenagers included, are blatantly ignoring how their thoughtless actions can affect an unknowing amount of people

The choice to party and attend large gatherings because you are” just having fun” and “it’s no big deal” highlights this ignorance. It is a big deal. Recognize and accept that we are no longer living in a time where your actions only pose a problem for the people in your family and immediate circle of friends.

Consequences that will truly be felt by the adolescent community are in decisions about online vs in person school. The school board has worked to create a plan that works for everyone, and it is no surprise that high school students have received the short end of the stick in every situation. The urgency for getting younger kids back in school is much greater than high schoolers. This has brought about many complaints from parents claiming that high school is more important and that those students deserve to be in person. 

However, actions shown by party-goers make me question if we really do deserve the privilege of in-person instruction. It seems, according to Halloween weekend, that some people do not care if case numbers rise and we are unable to go back to school. In person start times have been pushed back numerous times, and the likelihood they will be pushed back again is not out of the question. Maybe if some teenagers stayed home instead of partying, their peers would not have to deal with the consequences of their actions. 

Choosing to go out in large gatherings not only pushes back our safe return and puts more people at risk, but it shows a tremendous disrespect to front-line workers who put their lives on the line every single day to battle COVID. Especially in Forsyth County, with our major healthcare network, we owe it to those dedicated workers to do our part and stay home. 

Selfishness and carelessness have no place to exist during a global pandemic. Yes, it is hard, but everyone has to follow the guidelines. If choices like this continue to be made, this country may see itself in the same position next year. Empathy and respect are shown through actions. People are dying, the only way to get through this pandemic is if we all work together to do our part and follow the guidelines to stop the spread of the virus.