Coronavirus Anxieties Reach Latin


Emilia Rose, Staff Writer

As coronavirus continues to be a global concern, Latin students are eager to share their opinions, along with rumors they have heard from friends, family, and the media on the issue. There have been cases reported in Chicago which have led to worries among the city itself, and more specifically among Latin’s student body.  
An interesting and worrisome factor at Latin when discussing the virus is the fact that there is a project week visiting Tokyo. As a majority of the people carrying the virus live in China, going to a nearby country with students can be a threat. Sophomore Lily Harris, who is scheduled to go on this trip, shared her personal opinion. “It has been a recurring thought that the trip could be affected by the coronavirus.” She said, “I personally think we will go but it is something to be conscious about as there have been cases reported in Tokyo.” The trip is being closely monitored, but as of now, the trip is on. 
Sophomore Tommy Newman described how he feels that in some ways, the virus is bringing people around the world together. “I feel like as horrible as it is, it shows how well humans can come together and solve a worldwide problem,” he said. “Doctors have done everything they can to help the patients with the virus, but also prevent others from catching it as best they can. 
However, Tommy also expressed concerns about how the virus feeds into racist ideologies. “Something that bothers me is how people in America have started to assume that every Chinese person has coronavirus.” Tommy describes the different pieces of media he has seen such as “memes, social media posts, etc.” that all relate to racism towards Chinese people.
Rumors going around the school tend to give students all sorts of thoughts and ideas about the virus. Junior Frances Hutchison talked about the rumors she has heard, and how they are being discussed at school. “We talk about it in Biology; my teacher said that everyone in Chicago getting it is very unrealistic because the people that have it are extremely quarantined, and the risk of someone catching it here is very slim.” Going along with this idea, Ivy Shenk, another Latin junior, has a similar opinion on the rumors she has heard regarding the virus. “I have heard that it is actually not as big of a deal as people say,” she said. “There is a lot more conversation on who will get it—saying that everyone is going to die is a bit of an exaggeration.” 
Clearly, the virus is both a worldwide and in-school concern. However, from interviews, it seems as though Latin students are overreacting, and the virus isn’t as big of a deal as it is portrayed as in the media and in conversations. The big question that seems to be surrounding the topic is: Will the virus continue to spread to different countries, and will it ever put Chicago in real danger?