Momma Said

By Teri Cayton

The Parsons Advocate

West Virginia is now experiencing an elevation in the cases of COVID-19.  We have been behind the curve ever since the first outbreak.  We have a maximum security prison not far from my home and the increase of cases there has exploded.  I was hoping we would not have many cases in our vicinity but I guess that was just a pipe dream.  Momma Said, “What goes around, comes around.”

With over 100,000 souls lost so far just in the US it is just overwhelming.  And over Memorial Day weekend, people were just going crazy.  I do not feel it is justified to possibly die to spend the day at the beach. And the number of people I saw on TV with small children with no masks or other protection.  It is one thing for an adult to put their life in danger but it is not very responsible to have a child in that kind of crowd.

This is getting close in comparison with the Black Plague in England back in the 1600’s.  London lost roughly 15% of its population.  Everything came to a standstill just like now.  Those poor people who lost their jobs did not have unemployment or stimulus checks coming in the mail.  They had nothing to look forward to while the government and the wealthy packed up and left for somewhere safe.

I don’t know if the outbreak of diseases is nature’s way of thinning the herd so to speak.  This is one that will go down in the history books as one to take note of.  The way of life that we have become accustomed to has changed dramatically.  Will we go back to normal, who knows?  Momma Said, “The times are changing and we must adapt to survive.”

Similarities of COVID-19 and the Great Plague of 1665 – 1666

This was the worst outbreak of plague in England since the black death of 1348. London lost roughly 15% of its population. While 68,596 deaths were recorded in the city, the true number was probably over 100,000. Other parts of the country also suffered.

The earliest cases of disease occurred in the spring of 1665 in a parish outside the city walls called St Giles-in-the-Fields. The death rate began to rise during the hot summer months and peaked in September when 7,165 Londoners died in one week.

Rats carried the fleas that caused the plague. They were attracted by city streets filled with rubbish and waste, especially in the poorest areas.

Those who could, including most doctors, lawyers and merchants, fled the city. Charles II and his courtiers left in July for Hampton Court and then Oxford. Parliament was postponed and had to sit in October at Oxford, the increase of the plague being so dreadful. Court cases were also moved from Westminster to Oxford.

The Lord Mayor and aldermen (town councillors) remained to enforce the King’s orders to try and stop the spread of the disease. The poorest people remained in London with the rats and those people who had the plague. Watchmen locked and kept guard over infected houses. Parish officials provided food. Searchers looked for dead bodies and took them at night to plague pits for burial.

All trade with London and other plague towns was stopped. The Council of Scotland declared that the border with England would be closed. There were to be no fairs or trade with other countries. This meant many people lost their jobs – from servants to shoemakers to those who worked on the River Thame

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