More Covid Thoughts: Cultural Impacts On Results

Greg Proffit
3 min readApr 9, 2021
Screenshot of the Johns Hopkins University global data map, indicating cases per 100,000

The Covid-19 pandemic has been both a global morality play and a world-wide laboratory for observation of social behaviors. For the most part, countries and cultures steeped in cooperation and interdependence have responded better than those based more on individualism. By any metric, western countries, particularly the United States, show far more positive results and deaths when factored for population, than many Eastern, Asian countries. India is the outlier in terms of its rates of infection and deaths.

Statistical analyses of raw numbers like the ones linked above measure effects, not causes. There are not likely to be any studies broken down by political party or religious affiliation. If there were, they might prove illuminating. Not that politics or religions create disease. They don’t. They are not the primary cause. But once started, a viral disease spreads, or is mitigated, by the actions of the people where it is present. And people act on what they believe. Persons in the hardest hit countries, with the United States firmly ensconced in the top (bottom) position, either do not believe the virus is serious, or they don’t believe it’s up to them to do anything to help stop it.

The surest proof of belief is action. If you believe a chair will hold your weight, you demonstrate that belief by sitting on it. All actions (and I include inactions as a type of negative action), are the effects of some type of belief. If I do X, I believe I will achieve Y. Or conversely, if I refrain from doing X, I believe it will prevent Y. Any modifications made to behavior on account of Covid have come from belief in their necessity and efficacy. Those who have not believed it was serious (at least to themselves) have ridiculed the warnings and spurned the recommendations. This has happened to a statistically significant degree in Western countries and cultures contrasted with non-Western.

The Soviet Union collapsed because its brand of Communism failed. What does the unspeakably poor Covid record of the United States say about our culture and government? Or is that an un-Patriotic question? Maybe that is an unfair comparison. Maybe it’s not relevant. But something in the fabric of Western culture (in general), and the United States (in particular) has been the cause of the atrocious global rankings…

Greg Proffit

2xTop Writer - I write eclectically about Love, Reading, Ideas, Politics, God, Psych., & Random Absurdities—325+ stories. Twitter @gproffit