After reading the “Spanish Flu” by History.com article and watching the “COVID-19 vs. Spanish Flu – If You Don’t Know, Now You Know” video by Trevor Noah, I was shocked to learn of the tremendous similarities between COVID-19 and the Spanish Flu. Furthermore, I was even more surprised that I was never previously aware of these numerous similarities between COVID-19 and the Spanish Flu. Similarly to my peers, when COVID-19 escalated into a global pandemic and catalyzed the shutdown of the United States in March, I was in complete awe that the United States could ever shut down to the extent that it did. Yet, I was entirely oblivious to the fact that the United States experienced an extremely similar chain of events in 1918 due to the Spanish Flu. For example, The History.com article points out that in the United States “hospitals in some areas were so overloaded with the [Spanish] flu patients that schools, private homes and other buildings had to be converted into makeshift hospitals, some of which staffed by medical students.” Furthermore, Trevor Noah acknowledges the fact that during the Spanish Flu, “thousands protested mandatory masking measures.” I am very fascinated that history within the United States is practically repeating itself as approximately a century following the Spanish Flu, COVID-19 has caused people of the United States to act in a very similar manner and experience the same ramifications as the Spanish Flu.
Furthermore, I am surprised that the media has not greatly emphasized the comparability of the Spanish Flu and the COVID-19 pandemics as many Americans could be ignoring social distancing and quarantine rules because they feel that the government has no concrete evidence for their decisions to mandate masks or order shutdowns of public places. However, in reality, the trends of the Spanish flu mirror the COVID-19 pandemic thus far in many ways.