Kenyon Farrow on Inequality and COVID-19
Kenyon Farrow is a writer and journalist and senior editor of thebody.com and thebodypro.com. He talks about inequality and COVID-19, breaking down the racial and economic disparities present. This virus outbreak affects the most vulnerable communities while exposing a broken healthcare system in the United States. How will communities come together during this pandemic and what policies need to be addressed from government? Kenyon Farrow shares his insights.
Most infections diseases, they tend to travel the roots of inequality in any society. If we look at what we know about just some of the risk factors in terms of senior citizens and people who have underlying kind of health issues there, we know that there are racial disparities in diabetes, for instance, and hypertension impacts African Americans and Latinos in this country and heart disease. So we may potentially over time see some real racial stratification in terms of who’s impacted, and also just given that so many workers who are unable, say, to take off because they’re in service industry jobs, tend to be more black and brown folks.
One of the things that came out of the AIDS epidemic is that it did bring people together in a moment when things were really unsure to really take care of one another, but also fight like hell to live. And if that meant fighting government, the hospitals, public health, researchers, Pharma companies, people fought. And so I think we really need to carry that same spirit and thinking about what it is we need to do to take care of our personal selves and also our loved ones and our larger community. But also, what does this expose about the kinds of things we don’t have in place as a society that would prevent this from happening in the first place. So we should be fighting like hell for paid sick leave. We should be fighting like hell for Medicare for All. We should be fighting like hell for lower drug costs. We should be fighting like hell for people to have access to these things. To think about all the kinds of infrastructure that we don’t have in place that this virus exposes. We take care of one another and continue to fight for our lives.