Student Arts Students of CHS

Memeing the Coronavirus

The outbreak of the Coronavirus, announced on the last day of the 2019, has infected upwards of 35,000 people worldwide. After discovering the virus in Wuhan, a city 500 miles west of Shanghai, China, much of the Hubei Province was put on quarantine.

The threat of the respiratory ailment, which currently has 15 cases in the US (with one in Washington State), has many poking fun at the virus’ emergence.

Students are not too concerned with the virus making its way to Camas and making an impact.

“I think the sanitation infrastructure and technology is advanced enough on the West Coast that it will be able to be quarantined and contained before it makes its way to Southwest Washington,” Senior Elizabeth Nilles said.

Meanwhile, others like Senior David Hennan quip, “The Coronavirus is a myth.”

Photo by Elizabeth Nilles.

There are many motifs that memers try to capture. For starters, some noticed the timing of the affliction. There have been massive plague outbreaks in the last three centuries, all 100 years apart. In 1720 The Great Plague of Marseille appeared in France, killing 100,000 people. In 1820 the First Cholera Pandemic hit Southeast Asia. A century later in 1920, the Spanish Flu infected 500 million across the globe and killed a fifth of that amount. Now coincidentally in 2020, the world faces a near pandemic that is the Wuhan Coronavirus.

Others are making Coronavirus references to the mobile pandemic game Plague Inc, suggesting that everyone relocate to certain countries. In the game, the objective is to infect and kill the entire world with a disease that the user creates. Many players, however, run into the problem of not being able to conquer Greenland or Iceland.

One last meme concept many are using involves imagining that acquaintances are catching the disease. The most popular being other students, neighbors, or people of Chinese descent. Nilles submitted a meme of this essence, pictured above.

All in all, this lack of concern for the Wuhan Coronavirus’s capability to threaten Southwest Washington allows for people to joke about the circumstances of if it did occur. Memeing is one technique that is used to lighten the mood of grave situations, and students at CHS are enthusiastic about it.

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