As the new human coronavirus spreads around the world, individuals and families should prepare — but are we? The Centers for Disease Control has already said that it expects community transmission in the United States, and asked families to be ready for the possibility of a “significant disruption to our lives.”

Be ready? But how? It seems to me that some people may be holding back from preparing because of their understandable dislike of associating such preparation with doomsday or “prepper” subcultures. Another possibility is that people may have learned that for many people the disease is mild, which is certainly true, so they don’t think it’s a big risk to them. Also, many doomsday scenarios advise extensive preparation for increasingly outlandish scenarios, and this may seem daunting and pointless (and it is). Others may not feel like contributing to a panic or appearing to be selfish.



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