A paramilitary police officer wears a protective facemask as he stands guard at the exit of the Forbidden City in Beijing. (Nicolas Asfouri | AFP | Getty Images)

A paramilitary police officer wears a protective facemask as he stands guard at the exit of the Forbidden City in Beijing. (Nicolas Asfouri | AFP | Getty Images)

LETTER: Coronavirus strikes more fear than O.D.s, murders

To the editor,

Coronaviruses are known to cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases. To study these tiny demons, you would need an electron microscope and a wiliness to leap into an enormous test tube filled with mind-boggling biological terminology and medical jargon. The coronavirus has club-like spikes projecting from its spherical body, not unlike naval mines that are tethered to an anchor on the seabed for the purpose of disrupting or sinking enemy ships.

The latest novel (not previously identified in humans) coronavirus (CoV) has governments around the world cooperating. Fear of this micro-dot-sized virus has succeeded in uniting the globe in a common cause; whereas, the ongoing threat of nuclear annihilation, countless deaths from religious bigotry and the ominous climate change crisis, have failed.

In 2017, according to Google, nearly 69,000 people were killed as a direct result of state-based armed conflicts; 464,000 homicides occurred worldwide; and 70,000 Americans died from drug overdoses.

Obviously, fear of the unknown is much stronger than fear of the familiar.

Lloyd Atkins, Vernon