Racist coronavirus? About the statistics of those affected by the new virus?

«Coronavirus racism» has become one of the main topics of discussion in the English-speaking information space against the backdrop of emerging statistics on the composition of pandemic victims.

It turns out that up to 70% of the coronavirus victims in some American states were members of the African-American community. Among those infected, about 42% were African-American, while they make up only 12% of the U.S. population.

It should be noted, however, that in states with high numbers of infections and deaths among African Americans, their concentration is higher than their average proportion in the country, even though these states have disproportionately high numbers of black Americans.

The racial disparity in the pattern of coronavirus infections and deaths is confirmed by recent data from the United Kingdom. According to these data, up to one third of the infected persons are representatives of racial minorities, although their share in the population of the country does not exceed 15%.

However, it should be noted that the concentration of these groups is significantly higher in large cities, which are more affected by the coronavirus. If we look at the breakdown of those affected in the UK, Africans make up 13.6%, while Asians, mainly South Asians such as Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis, make up 13.8%. Given that they make up the majority of Muslims in the UK, it is clear that the proportion of infected individuals within the Muslim community is higher than average, as mentioned above.

These patterns have been observed before — for example, in Europe, the highest number of infected and deceased individuals were and are in southern countries (Italy, Spain, France), while northern European countries, both primary and secondary, have significantly fewer cases. This trend is evident even within a single country: in Switzerland, for example, the Italian-speaking cantons had more cases than the French-speaking cantons, and the French-speaking cantons had more cases than the German-speaking cantons. One could conclude that the coronavirus is indeed racist, affecting southerners more than northerners. However, in Italy, the pandemic hotspot in Europe, this would be disproved — it did not affect the southern regions, which were minimally affected, but rather the northern and wealthier regions.

Speaking of wealth. The analysis of coronavirus victims leads to the conclusion that «the rich also cry» in the sense that they suffer from it, and not only the rich, but also the famous. There are already hundreds of cases of well-known politicians, journalists, cultural figures and even heads of state being infected, including dozens of deaths among them or severe illness requiring artificial lung ventilation or resuscitation.

So what is the pattern? The main groups at risk of the pandemic are either socially disadvantaged populations with chronic health problems and limited housing/working conditions (African Americans), or those with habits of close contact with a large number of people (Italians, Spaniards, South Asians, who partly belong to the first category), or celebrities and leaders who, because of their activities, are also forced to interact intensively with partners, subordinates, and so on.

The latter two categories can, in principle, adjust their lifestyles under the pressure of extraordinary circumstances, whereas the situation of the first category is almost hopeless — neither health nor housing conditions can be improved quickly, especially when everything is working in the opposite direction. The only hope for them is that society as a whole will be able to defeat the pandemic.

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