'If I get corona, I get corona': the Americans who wish they'd taken Covid-19 seriously

Poppy Noor
·4-min read
<span>Photograph: Julio Cortez/AP</span>
Photograph: Julio Cortez/AP

The past few weeks have brought considerable reason to question the purpose of human existence. Between the examples of influencers licking toilets during this pandemic and the people who think it’s funny to cough on food at the grocery store, are we seriously still supposed to believe in Darwin’s theory of evolution?

Although people continually and recklessly flouting social distancing rules is infuriating, we, the sensible public, can at least rest safe in the knowledge that experts are experts for a reason, and ignoring them is not best advised. What’s the point in respecting all those measures if no one else is listening, I hear you ask?

Well, it turns out that some of this month’s biggest violators are having to learn these lessons themselves. So before you consider doing something stupid, too, read this list.

The partying spring breakers now regret partying

If anyone wanted an excuse to tar all young people as irresponsible and selfish, they would need to look no further than the University of Tampa. They went viral a few weeks back after footage showed students on spring break partying it up on a beach, despite government guidance to socially distance from one another. One student, Brady Sluder, even justified himself to CBS, saying: “If I get corona, I get corona, at the end of the day I’m not gonna let it stop me from partying.”

But now the University of Tampa has confirmed that at least five of those students have tested positive – and it turns out the students are feeling pretty bad about it. Sluder has taken to Instagram to apologize publicly, meanwhile others have expressed regret over the implications that their actions could now have on loved ones.

Ron Paul may have to stop denying the virus, since his son has it

On 16 March, the former Texas congressman Ron Paul wrote an articled titled: The Coronavirus Hoax. In the article, he accused Democrats of using the coronavirus to “grab more power and authority in the name of fighting a virus that thus far has killed less than 100 Americans”.

Six days later, his son Rand Paul became the first US senator to test positive for Covid-19. It isn’t fair that his son should suffer for his sins, but at least we can hope the news has encouraged Ron Paul to take the pandemic a little more seriously.

Then again, Rand Paul was still hitting the gym and swimming in the White House pool while awaiting his results, so maybe that’s a little too hopeful.

A toilet-licking influencer is left with a bad taste

It is not confirmed that this TikTok influencer’s coronavirus was contracted the moment that he decided to lick a toilet seat, but I am going to take a punt and suggest that it wasn’t the best thing he could have done.

The influencer, known as Larz, posted footage of himself in a hospital bed on Sunday, according to the Daily Mail, confirming that he has tested positive for the virus.

He had licked the public toilet as part of a social media challenge called “Coronavirus Challenge” which is about as dumb as it sounds, and involves licking stuff, like produce at the grocery store, for reasons unknown to me.

Larz was criticised for engaging in the challenge on a chatshow last week. On the show, he also said that he doesn’t talk to his mom because she doesn’t have enough followers. Right.

Coronavirus partiers should have stayed at home

While many of us are spending the pandemic cooped up indoors, salivating over photos from the time when we were allowed out in public, others are taking a more laissez-faire approach to social distancing. By which I mean they are not trying to social distance, not even a little bit.

In fact, some jokers have been attending “coronavirus parties”, because, lol, pandemics are funny now.

Anyway, it turns out that – you guessed it – someone who attended a coronavirus party in Kentucky has contracted Covid-19. That person will be happy to know that the Kentucky governor, Andy Beshear, has found it in his heart to forgive, at least.