Magazine April 6, 2020, Issue

The Coronavirus Blizzard

Empty store shelves in San Rafael, Calif., March 13 (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
An epidemic is like a storm in more than the metaphorical sense

Blizzards apparently cause Americans to desire French toast — why else run to the store for milk, eggs, and bread? Coronavirus has, on the other hand, sent Americans in search of toilet paper and better Wi-Fi connections. 

The parallels are worth thinking about: An epidemic is like a storm in more than the metaphorical sense. 

Consider a hurricane. In a powerful storm, the windows in your house may leak — even if they are really good ones and properly installed. But the big variable isn’t leaky windows: It is keeping the roof on. The damage done to houses that lose their roof

This article appears as “The Viral Blizzard” in the April 6, 2020, print edition of National Review.

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A reader responds to Madeleine Kearns's article, ‘Pornography Is a Public-Health Problem.’

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