June 16, 2024

When Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests erupted around the world, many waited in fear for the eventual surge of COVID-19 infections. But a paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) has found that the protests did not reignite growth of coronavirus infections. 

The analysis also discovered that while the protest increased the risk of protesters for contracting the coronavirus, the protests had little effect on the spread of COVID-19 on the entire population. 

Editor’s Note: This article shows us that predictions of negative health consequence due to mass gatherings are narrowly conceived as they don’t consider new discoveries about the coronavirus. The NBER study shows us that it is safe to do large scale events.

The article also raises an important point: sometimes, it is important to break safety protocols when our very humanity is at stake. For many young citizens today, justice and equality trumps individual wellbeing. If there is anything that can lead us to a new, better, normal, then it is this: we are redefining our societies to become inclusive, compassionate, and human-centered [Nicanor has written an article on how we can begin the process of transforming our societies, read END THE LOCKDOWNS! Stop It Outside By Ending the Lockdowns Inside Us]

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