Gen Z is “Sick” of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Why the COVID-19 pandemic matters to Gen Z and how the Biden Administration needs to address it

Taking office at a crucial time in American history, President Joe Biden’s administration faces urgent social, economic, political, and environmental issues. More than any other generation, Gen Z uses social media as a platform to promote these essential issues. The Lance wants to use our platform to raise awareness about the issues that matter to our generation and that we hope President Biden will prioritize in his first 100 days.

During the Ebola outbreak from 2014 to 2016, President Barack Obama’s National Security Advisor established the Global Health and Security Biodefense Unit (GHSBU). The GHSBU advised the president on potential foreign policy threats and devised an action plan for potential pandemics. In May 2018, the Trump administration disbanded the GHSBU. Almost two years later, the COVID-19 pandemic killed nearly 4oo,000 Americans, lives that the GHSBU could have helped save.

The Trump administration’s pandemic response has failed our country, and has especially failed our generation. With the new Biden administration, we must have real leaders who are willing to put their own policies on the line to protect people’s lives.  

Our generation has seen the typical “teenage experience” slip away from us.  The pandemic won’t end in time for some of us to experience school dances, sports games, and other events we’ve always looked forward to. Although being deprived of a traditional high school experience is extremely disappointing and frustrating, we must do what we can to keep those around us safe from the virus as cases continue to climb. 

This winter has seen a drastic spike in COVID cases, indicating a second wave of the virus. (Tala Areiqat)

In nearly 30 states, death rates are increasing, with little action being taken. The CDC predicts that the country will report 16,200 to 29,600 new deaths by the middle of February. Professionals warned before the season started that the pandemic would worsen during the winter months—and multiple waves of a pandemic are something that the country has seen before. 

During the pandemic of 1918, the first wave came and went, shutting down schools and businesses. But soon after the country returned to normal and people stopped taking the pandemic seriously, a second wave spread, killing more than before. When they teach students history in schools, they do so that we do not repeat mistakes, but that is precisely what happened with the Trump administration’s handling of COVID. 

On January 14, only a few days after the country hit its record high for daily COVID deaths, the then President-Elect Biden announced his plan to combat the pandemic, which included a $1.9 trillion spending plan that would safely and effectively address reopening the country and economy. 

Although this plan is important, the Biden administration must also consider pressuring state governors to issue “stay-at-home” orders and fine those who do not follow guidelines, which will hopefully sway people against going out for non-essentials. 

It is essential for President Biden to follow through on his plans and push Congress to pass them so Americans can learn, work, and live from home without anxieties about financial issues or spreading the virus to their loved ones.  The country can slowly and safely return to life as it was before the pandemic. As for Gen Z, although life now may be filled with Zoom classes and extended periods of time where you hardly ever leave your room, these measures can give us our “normal” lives back.