30 counties worth!

In November, in an attempt to really wrap my mind around how many people had died in the U.S. from Covid, I compared the death toll to counties in Alabama. At the time the death toll was equal to the populations of Jackson, DeKalb, Etowah, and Cherokee counties in northeast Alabama. So, I said it would be like everyone in these counties just “disappearing.” My how things have worsened.

Now, if I were to continue on that side of Alabama with the same sort of comparison, I would have to add Marshall, Blount, Saint Clair, Cleburne, and Randolph counties to the original four. That sounds horrible. This awful thing has taken out the equivalent of 9 counties worth of people. But I could make it sound even worse. If I were to count up all the least populated counties in Alabama until I got to the current number of Covid deaths(559,000), I would have to make 30 counties worth of people disappear!! 30 counties! Try looking at a map of Alabama and picture that in your head. 30 counties empty.

Sometimes we become numb to the numbers, so I think it’s important to picture the tragedy in different ways. We should not let the numbers overwhelm us and make us cower in fear, but we should not be dismissive of these giant numbers either. Thank you for reading my 92nd blog.

Mark Inglis

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