“Pandemic to ENDemic”: An inspirational message for the whole world
Recently, I have seen a very interesting online poster about Mrs. Fran Drescher’s (who is a distinguished actress and President of the Cancer Schmancer Movement) Master Class Health Summit, which is scheduled to be held on 8th January 2022 in Los Angeles, California (https://www.cancerschmancer.org/summit-2022). On this poster, we can see a really optimistic message, which is going to be the title of Mrs. Drescher’s topic of speech: “Pandemic to ENDemic, The Game Plan”. In this title, I really admired the use of the part “Pandemic to ENDemic”. I found it very inspirational! This slogan is full of optimism! And the world needs such optimistic messages so much, especially during these dark times of the Coronavirus pandemic. As a historian, I have always been a pessimist on the issue of the Coronavirus pandemic, because I have met too many cases of epidemics and pandemics in my studies. The science I am serving, History, is relentless in giving reports from many different periods and areas, which are full of numbers of victims. In History, epidemics and pandemics have been proved to be completely disastrous for the humanity, as, in all cases, they have managed to vanish a calculable part of the population of each country. In special cases, for example in some medieval Spanish regions, the Black Death’s pandemic (1348–1353 AC) has managed to kill 50%, or even more, of the local populations! Historically, the humanity has experienced a very bad background in epidemics, pandemics, etc. Now, history is repeating this background of bad experience, as COVID-19, initially an epidemic which appeared in Wuhan, China, in 2019, has been converted into a tremendous pandemic, which is spreading very fastly in the whole world. Unfortunately, the humanity has lost many of its members, worldwide, due to the new pandemic. So, as the humanity is currently suffering a new pandemic, my mind has travelled back in the past, counting the large numbers of losses during the past epidemics, and reminding other bad consequences which those epidemics had on the past societies. More especially, I remember some historical cases, in which an epidemic strike had caused a really pessimistic atmosphere in a certain local society, at a point that the dwellers had realized and accepted the fatality of human life. For example, the distinguished ancient Greek historian Thucydides (who lived approximately from 460 BC to 390 BC), in the second book of his History (in paragraphs 46–54), he describes the situation dominating in ancient Athens in 430 BC, during the strike of a great, deadly epidemic in this region. In paragraph 53 of this work, Thucydides, who had experienced this epidemic as a citizen of Athens, writes that, due to the epidemic’s strike, the Athenians had realized that human life and money were equally ephemeral, and, as a result, they decided to enjoy their life as they wanted, without obeying to any laws and rules. Today, me, as a modern Greek historian, I am always thinking about all these details which my ancestor, Thucydides, has written about ancient Athens of 430 B.C. Many times, I am wondering what is going to happen if the modern humanity’s psychology will become generally too pessimistic, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I am worried that, once the modern humanity realizes the fatality of human’s life, the people will start ignoring laws and rules of modern human civilization, and they will have only one task: to enjoy their ephemeral lives in the way they want, without any limits. In terms of History, we can say that this danger is quite realistic during these dark times with the great strike of COVID-19 pandemic. Finally, I believe that what the world needs now is optimistic messages, in order to avoid such social phenomena as described above. Recently, I have read many scientists promising that COVID-19 pandemic will become endemic in the near future, and, probably, it will have milder symptoms on the infected, due to the vaccinations or to the past infections of the same virus. These are very good and optimistic news, because, as an endemic, COVID-19 will be, finally, possible to be put under a better control by medicine.
This is the reason for which I have distinguished the slogan “Pandemic to ENDemic” used by Mrs. Fran Drescher. This slogan can show, in a quite simple and smart way, that the COVID-19 pandemic, this tremendous disaster of modern global history, is gradually approaching its end (that’s why the first three letters of the word “endemic”, in the slogan we are examining here, are written as capital), as this virus is going to become an endemic. And, as an endemic, COVID-19 will probably be more manageable by medicine. To sum up, the presence of such positive and optimistic messages is undoubtedly necessary for the world in these crucial times, during which the humanity is still suffering the acne of the COVID-19 pandemic. Such optimistic messages can maintain the hope for the future in people’s hearts.
Acknowledgments: This article is dedicated to all the members of the Cancer Schmancer Movement.