One Out of Many

E pluribus unum. We’ve all seen and heard that Latin phrase. It’s on our currency. It’s a part of the Great Seal of the United States. The translation of it is, “out of many, one.” It was adopted to show that out of the union of the original Thirteen Colonies, a new nation emerged. One nation. A more perfect one. A united one. There are several variations of this actual translation, however. It can also mean “one from many” or “one out of many.” It is this last translation that I’ve been thinking about a lot this morning.

On April 3rd this year, I started tracking different stats about this pandemic from the COVID-19 Dashboard by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. Almost every day since then, I have added to my spreadsheet. At first, I was just tracking cases and the difference in cases each day both in the US and worldwide. It wasn’t collected at the same time every day, but it was almost every day. Soon thereafter, on April 19th, I added the number of deaths worldwide. Again, this was worldwide. At the time, we were at a total of 165,106. The next day, I added the difference in deaths per day. I watched, day after day, as the number of cases rose. By April 25th, we had already surpassed 200,000 deaths. By May 15th, we reached over 300,000 worldwide.

On May 20th, I began tracking the number of deaths in the US as well as the difference per day. At the time, over 91,000 people had died in our country, and before the end of the month, we hit the horrible milestone of 100,000 deaths. As of this morning, August 18th, I have tracked the following information:

* Worldwide Cases – 21,916,639 (201,591 new cases since yesterday)
* US Cases – 5,444,554 (40,054 cases since yesterday)
* Worldwide Deaths – 774,720 (731 since yesterday)
* US Deaths – 170,564 (499 since yesterday)

It is this last number that I can’t get out of my head. You see, the husband of a very dear friend is now included in the total added from yesterday. He is one out of many. So many. We see these numbers go up day after day, and it’s becoming just another thing to acknowledge and move on. We, as human beings, have to stop and really take this in. Why did it come to this?

I want you to ponder something that has boggled my mind. We all have seen or heard a memorial such as one from 9/11 or during a Black Lives Matter protest when the names of all the victims are read aloud in remembrance. Hearing each name read gives validity to their lives and helps to put what happened into perspective. With that in mind, I calculated how long it would take to read, at an average pace, the names of all those in the US who have died from this pandemic, knowing very well that every medical expert is sure the number is much, much higher. As it stands now, it would take over 43 hours to read the first and last name of each victim. Furthermore, it would take over 58 days to read the first and last name of all those in the US who have been infected. Is someone you know or love included in that time period?

Now is not the time to be selfish about the fact that wearing a mask or socially distancing is uncomfortable or is infringing upon your rights. There is nothing right about all those who have been infected, will be infected, have died, or will die. Wearing a mask does not impede your ability to speak or voice your opinion. Socially distancing won’t last forever, and, with all of us doing our part, we will be able to embrace our loved ones, high five a teammate, or comfort someone in person. As much as we’d like the world to revolve around ourselves, it doesn’t. Your actions have consequences, but out of many, you are one. You are a powerful individual who has the ability to keep those around you safe by doing something so very simple.

The numbers I listed above represent people. These are not numbers, they are lives affected, infected, possibly because even just one out of many was not being safe. Multiply those numbers by how many are in your immediate family, and the results are overwhelming. How many more lives will be touched by this before we realize that we have the power to help make things better? You may be one, but we…we are many.

About robynthorn

Robyn Thorn is just a girl learning that she’s perfectly normal after all these years. She has been blogging for several years and can often be found singing the night away at her local karaoke establishments. Although she has no children of her own, she is Aunt Bobbyn to many. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Communications and finds that this fits her personality perfectly. She is a certified Zumba® instructor, an ACE certified Group Fitness Instructor, and holds a Texas Secondary Teaching Certificate in Speech Communications. Robyn has also been a mentor with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas since 2011. She is the author and publisher of "We're All Rubber Bands: Finding happiness with who you are."
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