“ Crisis in America”


For many years I have heard people harass each other’s complaints by saying “that is such a first world problem,” implying that it was really an inconvenience compared to the real issues facing most of the world. But the insanity around toilet paper in the United States during this virus outbreak really takes the prize. Where to begin?

First, why the mad rush to buy toilet paper? I heard one explanation that it makes people think they have done SOMETHING during a time of great uncertainty. However, I prefer the answer given to a reporter yesterday who asked a shopper why she was buying it. Her reply? “I don’t know why, but everyone else seems to be doing it.” (Apparently she never heard her mother ask her “if everyone jumps off the roof are you going to?”)

Second, what does it say about us as a people? Nothing good, that is certain. Millions of fellow human beings are in refugee camps, in shacks, homeless, and without basic toilet facilities. I cannot imagine their response to our childish hysteria over lack of tissue. Our country is showing its underbelly and it isn’t pretty. It certainly looks as though we worship the Dow Jones Average and toilet paper.

Is this what it looks like as a country falls apart? “Not with a bang, but a tissue.” (With apologies to T.S. Eliot)

44 thoughts on ““ Crisis in America”

    1. Unfortunately – in the US at least – the disease is having a very unequal impact. Those who have to keep working and live in densely populated areas and who are poor are getting sick at a much higher rate than the rest of the population. It certainly an equal opportunity virus but some communities are more exposed and less well-equipped to cope.


      Liked by 1 person

    1. Humanity is doing its usual so-so best.

      Many extraordinary people – grocery workers, medical personnel, transit workers, delivery people are rising to the occasion with magnificence. And many with very poor expectation of decent remuneration any time soon. They are the best of us. And disproportionately poor and/or people of color.

      Our ‘elected’ and appointed officials in Washington D.C. not so much. Of all the times to have a corrupt, narcissistic ignoramus in the White House this is the worst.


  1. I can’t help but wonder if most of the panic buyers are the same people who voted for Trump, thinking he would save them from their worst fears of losing control of life as they know it. Stores should be setting reasonable limits on the purchase of items that are being hoarded.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. This was a wonderful post. It is sad what is going on worldwide and it is very unfortunate how the United States has handled this issue. If only the government had acted sooner, instead of saying it was a democratic hoax, maybe more people in the states could have been saved. I hate knowing about the numerous people in other countries that have lost their lives, none of this should have happened. It is absolutely insane how grocery stores are out of toilet paper and there are fights over what is in the stores. I am being forced to stop going out because I have a weak immune system. I am wishing the best for everyone in the world and hope there will be less deaths. I am looking forward to reading more of your posts and hope if you find time, you will check out my site. I do the best I can to spread as much positivity as I can!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. When this virus gets a hold in Africa, Elizabeth, it is going to be a very nasty picture. People here don’t have soap or even water in a lot of places to undertake basic hygiene measures. Many people live in shacks and shared accommodations with one toilet for many people. There will be no self isolating and we only have four semi descent government hospitals here in South Africa. It is very frightening.

    Liked by 6 people

  4. This is Canada and my local stores are all out of toilet paper too, and so many other things. Selfish. But these shut-in times are bringing us back to a gentler, simpler, quieter time when family did hang out with one another and eat together at table at proper mealtimes. Every cloud has a silver lining (as Mom used to say!) . Keep safe and wise. Nice to meet you. Smiles xx

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Indian government had been quicker at responding. Our phone companies are relaying the steps to deal with the virus as a dial tone. So the need for basic hygiene and visiting doctor on first symptom is drilled in our minds. We have multiple government hospitals in each district, so medical attention is quick. It has helped control the spread of the disease so far. While schools are closed indefinitely, and companies insisting on work from home, life is still the same as usual. I have heard of people hoarding in cities that had been hit worst. But small towns are still safe.

    Liked by 3 people

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