How do I deny the reality

Coronavirus Deniers: People Who Don't Accept Reality

Denying the reality of the corona pandemic costs human lives. There are still people (including politicians) who have not yet acted accordingly and this has its price. But why do some still deny this obvious reality? What is behind this irresponsible behavior?

Last update: May 30, 2020

In the midst of the global corona crisis, we can observe a phenomenon that is attracting our attention. We speak of people who deny reality: Coronavirus deniers refuse to see the scope of the current situation. Of course, these behaviors have always existed, but in emergency situations like these we are particularly surprised.

A few weeks agoBoris Johnson, the Prime Minister of Great Britain, was still in favor of the herd immunity strategy.This is the name given to indirect protection against infection by a high percentage of an immune population. He did not want any restrictions on movement in order to favor natural immunity through the illness of a large part of the population. But then he realized that this strategy could have resulted in half a million British casualties.

The curfew has now also been imposed in Great Britain. We can give other striking examples.Andrés Manuel López Obrador, President of Mexico, urged its people to go out to eat, to carry on with normal life and attend public events to keep the economy going. The irresponsibility of these politicians can be devastating in the short and long term.

We know that sooner or later they will also take restrictive measures or have already done so.But the spread of the disease and the impact on the health system are far worse if these measures are implemented too late.

Denial of the pandemic claims human lives, but unfortunately this phenomenon can be observed again and again.

Coronavirus deniers: how does it come about?

The denial of the pandemic can not only be observed in political circles.It is also worrying to see that many people do not adhere to the restrictions on movement or the curfew and in some cases even behave in a challenging manner.

Many people have already been punished for violating the curfew, which seems almost grotesque.

We could just call them irresponsible.But from a psychological perspective, this behavior is very interesting because of various facts.

While a large part of the population is experimenting with fear and nervousness as we have to face a relatively unknown virus, others do not attach importance to this fact.Despite the dramatic images from the hospitals that we see every day, and despite the high number of deaths that are increasing every day, some people still react with indifference.

How can we explain this coronavirus denier phenomenon? We then look at various factors.

Coronavirus Deniers: Assignment Errors and Theory of Mind (ToM)

The Theory of Mind explains that a person is able to empathize with the thoughts and intentions of other people and to recognize them in oneself. So it's about understanding and anticipating what others are thinking and how they will react under certain circumstances. But there is a special feature in this context: the assignment error.

This happens when we think that others are reacting wrongly or overly. Experts explain this by saying thatour brains sometimes make mistakes using the most important human instinct: the instinct for survival.To better understand this, let's use an example:

It's like seeing a hundred gazelles running and thinking that this behavior is exaggerated and absurd.But at this moment we are unable to see why all the gazelles are running, namely because they are being pursued by an enemy.

What is more important? The individual well-being or the community, the economy or the people?

An explanation for the denial of the pandemic can also be found in the desire to maintain the normal situation. Here we have to differentiate between the individual and the state.

On the one hand, there are people who prioritize their own wellbeing andare not ready to change their lifestyle.This could be one reason why many people still believe that Covid-19 is a normal flu that won't harm them themselves. They minimize the risk of infecting others and putting their lives at risk, as well as your own risk of serious health consequences.

On the other hand we can see different politicians who are unwilling to stop the economy. They assume that a country's deadlock is worse for the economy than it is for the people.

Coronavirus Deniers: The Impact of the Unreal as an Explanation

The denial of the corona pandemic can also be explained by a curious but very convincing fact: We are talking about the effect of feeling unreal.

There is something we cannot deny: every day when we get up, the sun illuminates our planet, we have internet, food in the fridge and the people we love by our side.So why believe that a highly contagious virus kills numerous people?

For many, the word pandemic is a term from another era. One is almost convinced that in such an advanced worlda quick answer to this problem can also be found.However, the naive belief that there is a quick fix is ​​not the truth.

In addition to these unreal thoughts, there is the factthat a large part of the population is used to seeing the world through the window of social networks.That is why everything seems so far away. You can't touch anything, smell anything, feel anything, so it's harmless. It's almost like we're watching a movie on Netflix.

Loss and illness seem far from home, far from our everyday lives.The effect of the unreal feeling makes it impossible for many people to assess the real gravity of the situation; and worse, act responsibly. But we must be aware that those who have not yet responded will be late.

The denial of the corona pandemic costs human lives and undoubtedly has the effect ofthat it will take us longer to stop the virus from spreading.We must not forget this and should therefore stay at home!

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