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The Panda

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The Panda last won the day on March 2

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  1. Also, as a side note for general education purposes when reading raw data and trying to interpret risks: Explaining Some Elementary Basics about Conditional Probability When trying to determine likelihood of dying, or risk, of any certain thing it’s inaccurate to use raw data of “incidents in the country” / population as a blanket risk for everyone. This is because probability of these events are conditional. While, I am sure most of you have been educated about how to interpret and calculate basic conditional probability at some point in your life (at least hopefully), it’s worth reminding everyone who doesn’t work with problems using statistics frequently. Conditional probability is different than general probability, as it’s the probability an event A occurs given some event B has already occurred. How is this relevant in interpreting risk of death or infection? Take the classic “The odds of you dying by a shark attack are 1 in 3,784,064”. While this probability may be technically true in the year the odds were calculated, it is also grossly misleading because it causes the reader misinterpret them with a random draw of an individual from the overall population. Ie. The odds of you specifically dying in a shark attack are dependent on many other events: If you live in Kansas, and never plan to leave Kansas in your life, your probability of dying in a shark attack is drastically reduced to something very close to zero. If you are a frequent surfer, this probability of dying in a shark attack would be much different. You would then need to look at the population of frequent surfers and how many frequent surfers die in shark attacks to figure out a more accurate probability for yourself if you’re going to remain a frequent surfer. Then further, you still would need to look at other factors a shark attack may be dependent on (such as what time of year and day you surf, what kind of beaches you surf in, whether you intentionally provoke a shark if you see one, etc.) You could easily have specific individuals whose risk of dying in a shark attack starts approaching something much higher, maybe even 1 in 25 or something. You would have to do the calculation yourself if you were curious. How does this have anything to do with COVID? When people make the arguments that “You’re much more likely to die of x than COVID” by just using a raw data point without considering conditional probabilities they’re likely being grossly misleading. A unique circumstance of COVID is that due to it being a global pandemic, the risk of contracting it is present nearly everywhere. That also means the risk of spreading it to more at risk people. This likely means risk of COVID, per age bracket, in an area is likely to be much more similar across the board. We’re all susceptible to contracting and spreading it, even if we’re in a less at risk demographic. And the other point of why these general claims are misleading is that COVID is a novel virus. It is a developing situation, still full of uncertainty, and posing an immediate risk to overwhelming our health care systems (and your conditional probability of dying of any disease or medical condition, provided you contract/have it, is going to increase by a fair to drastic amount if health care systems in your local area are overwhelmed and well over max capacity due to COVID). There are certainly serious issues that still need to be addressed, but all of them that people are pointing out are systemic issues. Addressing these systemic issues in the future is, for the most part, independent of addressing COVID now. Addressing COVID is not stopping mental health workers from being able to do video call sessions with their patients and provide adequate care. It’s not stopping our ability to continue to research other important areas of interest and possible solutions to implement after the crisis is done. But, we have to address this immediate crisis with priority, in order to be able to continue addressing these other systemic issues in this (or even the present if that’s your job and you’re able to work on it from home).
  2. For reference of the Economic value of implementing social distancing policies to flatten the curve, here’s a reference to 538’s solid literature review/article of the topic: https://www.google.com/amp/s/fivethirtyeight.com/features/what-should-the-government-spend-to-save-a-life/amp/ Now, you need to stop being misleading with the way you’re presenting these numbers. Suicide is a systemic issue that has been a constant presence. To make an argument that social distancing would create a suicide problem with a death rate worse than COVID-19 you would need to deduce suicides from depressions caused by COVID-19 social distancing policies. You would then need to be able to compare what COVID-19 death counts would be with no social distancing policies, as well as still be able to deduce if there would still be an increase in pre-COVID suicide rates in a case of non-social distancing and take that into account as well when making the comparison. The way you’re presenting this data is irresponsible, not in that depression is not a serious issue that requires addressing in countries throughout the world, and not that we don’t need to consider mental health issues that can arise from strict social distancing policies, but that you’re inaccurately using a raw data observation to try to infer a serious policy argument that social distancing shouldn’t be implemented. While misinformation and misleading uses of data observations is always dangerous, it’s specifically dangerous now because missteps one policy or personal decisions in this pandemic can lead to a higher number of COVID related deaths. And not only that, but if those policy missteps and social decision missteps lead to overwhelmed health care systems, you’re talking about people of varying health conditions receiving inadequate health care that can lead to death because of the lack of resources. This is a serious situation, and attempts to drastically downplay how serious our governments need to be taking the situation can have devastating consequences. I suggest you stop this thread unless you want to pivot and talk about how we can provide mental health care to people in times of social distancing.
  3. To be fair, @AndyLL is probably more accurate with that comment than inaccurate, in spirit, when speaking about the US. A fairly recent USNews report in 2015 reports how below average American students are at geographic comprehension in social studies classes: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.usnews.com/news/articles/2015/10/16/us-students-are-terrible-at-geography%3Fcontext%3Damp From a test given to 1000 Americans vs 1000 Europeans, while a majority of Americans could point out where China was, they faired quite a bit worse than their European counterparts. And it’s pretty staggering how poorly Americans and Europeans did at recognizing the locations of some fairly easy countries to locate (like North Korea, less than half of Americans in the survey could point to it on a map) https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-6289667/amp/The-U-S-vs-Europeans-interactive-test-shows-Americans-really-ARENT-good-geography.html So while, yes more than half of Americans probably could point to China on a map, the spirit of the comment was more of hyperbolizing about just how ignorant the American populace is as a whole about other places in the world. This is an overall idea that obviously shows up to be true.
  4. You’re worried that people calling this out will mean you won’t be able to call COVID-19 the “Chinese Virus”? I think you literally just reaffirmed my statement that it seems like most people complaining about political correctness are just upset they’re being called out for saying racist things.
  5. We’re not talking about political correctness, we’re talking about not using incorrect terminology to stigmatize a people group. Complaining about “political correctness” in most cases seems to mostly just be people upset that they get called out for saying something racist now.
  6. No, you did not read my post correctly. The underlying point is that using “Wuhan Virus” instead of COVID-19 or Coronavirus is something done with clear racist intent, and for no other reason but that.
  7. Dude, how are you not even able to read the syntax in those two articles correctly? The first one mentions Wuhan because the article was about China easing quarantine measures for the coronavirus in Wuhan. It was not calling it “The Wuhan Virus” Likewise, in your quote if you extended it to the full sentence it’s not calling it the Wuhan virus but talking about how the spread was continuing from its point of origination. Im not overly familiar with these journals but if they’re translations (which id assume if they’re East Asian journals, again not familiar enough here to make a claim) then you need to take that exact wording even more loosely as translations between languages can be imperfect. Anyways, even if these two journals did reference to COVID-19 as “The Wuhan Virus” that doesn’t mean the term isn’t racist, as it’s negating the fact that countries in East Asia are very different from each other and racism between Koreans, Japanese and Chinese descendants, for example, is prevalent from my understanding. Not only that, it also wouldn’t change the fact that it’s not the official name of the outbreak, and American usage of the term has so far only been used with racist connotations in an attempt to blame the Chinese on the outbreak. There is no other purpose for using “The Wuhan Virus” unless the intent is to be racist and blame another people group for something they aren’t, at large, responsible for.
  8. COVID-19 feels like a harsh lesson in the realities of why elected government matters. Crises are inevitable but they can be made much worse if you elect incompetent leadership.
  9. They’ll probably move it to November 2021 or something like that Was really looking forward to seeing Dune this year
  10. For those interested, this my current personal short list comprising of different time periods and culture Films Based in East Asia World War 2 Films World War 1 Films Vietnam War Films Films Based in 20th Century US Films Based in 20th Century Europe Films Based in 19th Century Europe Films Based in Feudal Europe Films Based in Russia Films Based in the Roman Empire / Rise of Christianity Films Based in 19th Century United States Films Based in the Colonial Era/15th-17th Century Films Based in Ancient History Films Based in the Middle East Films Based in Latin America Contemporary History Films (1970s and onward) Films Based in India Films Based in Africa Films Based Off of Historical Legend/Theology
  11. Based on prior histories, there is no reason to think there wouldn’t be. During the SARS outbreak in Toronto, similar discrimination against Asians in the city happened similarly to how it’s being described in news articles now. A U of Toronto paper outlining that https://www.utpjournals.press/doi/abs/10.3138/topia.16.23 And another paper which documents blaming and stigmatization of Latinos during the H1N1 epidemic https://bmcpublichealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-2458-13-1116 It is better to bring up awareness of the human tendency it stigmatize others during crises and alleviate some of the damages of it happening now, then say nothing and have to be reactionary after-the-fact of racist acts stemming from COVID-19 fears. Beyond that, as @aabattery pointed out, these racist acts have already been happening. It’s not a “wait and see” issue.
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