Illustration by James Membreno photo credit: newyorktimes.com
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Imagine being in your 80s, enjoying your retirement with a grand-class cruise ship. You get off with a souvenir, the notorious COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus. This souvenir, like many others, was made in China.

The Chinese government was warned about this new disease, and all they did was cover the disease up until it got spread to other countries. Coronavirus cases have multiplied in great numbers in both Japan and South Korea now, with South Korea being second only to China for cases of the Coronavirus. This could have been prevented if they did not censor the media that tried to warn other countries about the outbreak.

Thanks to the censorship of the media, the virus has even started spreading to nearby nations, such as Japan and South Korea. The cruise ship, the Diamond Princess, is currently under quarantine and docked in a Japanese harbor thanks to the virus. According to NHK, Japan’s national broadcasting organization, a Japanese man and woman left the ship last week and were hospitalized, and unfortunately passed away on Thursday, Feb. 13. In another case, Li Wenliang, a Chinese doctor who was taken in by Chinese authorities for warning about the dangers of a deadly new virus, died Friday, Feb. 7,  after becoming infected with it, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal.

Sure, the Chinese government has started to respond to the Wuhan crisis, but the effort is severely limited for political reasons and, obviously, a lack of transparency. It took only a few thousands of deaths for the government to step up and admit the virus existed. Could this epidemic have been prevented sooner? If only there was some way for their people to warn others, oh wait. They were censored.

Healthy or sick, Wuhan residents were not screened before getting quarantined by force with hundreds of other people. If any one of them were infected, they are now all infected. It feels like China was chosen as the first country in “Plague Inc.” on casual mode, but instead of “research doctors don’t work,” their work is hidden.

With China being one of the biggest producers of medical masks, having the outbreak there has severely lowered production, leading to a global shortage of masks. Several countries, such as Singapore and South Korea have been hoarding hand sanitizers and masks, further impacting the global shortage of surgical masks and the like. Yes, they just want to be safe and keep them in stock “just in case,” but this has led to a mask shortage for the people fighting on the front-lines; the doctors and nurses. Over 1,700 Chinese medical workers have already been infected, and six have died, according to a report from the New York Times.

In case the Chinese government censored the precautions too, stay hygenic, wash your hands and refrain from touching your face, and please cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough. 

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