Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, watches President Trump during a press conference. Source: The Nation

If I get corona, I get corona.”*

I recently saw a video circulating Twitter of young adults discussing COVID-19 while in Florida for Spring Break. The video was terrifying (linked below), and it expressed a sentiment I’ve heard far too many times: social distancing doesn’t matter and COVID-19 will not affect us.

CBS News interview of young adults on spring break in Florida, discussing COVID-19.

One argument that I’ve often heard about why social distancing isn’t being followed in the U.S. is that American values of independence and individual freedoms inhibit our inclination to follow government recommendations to stay inside…

An image of COVID-19, commonly referred to as Coronavirus, sourced from LiveScience.com

My father is the biggest germaphobe I know. For years before the COVID-19 outbreak, he refused to share drinks with anyone, snapped when my brother or I grabbed the hand-rail on escalators, and shuddered at most public surfaces. It’s always been a running joke within my family — if I was hanging off a cliff, my dad would ask me to use hand-sanitizer before helping me up.

However, what used to be a joke is no longer a laughing matter. Coronavirus is undeniably the most serious threat we face today. It has taken thousands of lives, disrupted the global economy…

Credit to @andrewfahmy on Reddit for the image.

Every nation’s history is besmirched by tragedy. Be it civil wars, genocides, or revolutions, no nation is born clean. And unfortunately, with every tragedy inevitably comes a victim. Mass casualties, persecuted peoples, human rights abuses, all are found within history’s tragic moments. Tragedy begets suffering, which is immortalized in the memory of those affected.

But in that memory lies a question at the root of national identity: how can a nation survive with memories of wrongdoing, especially when that pain was inflicted by members of the population against one another?

It takes a lot to bring people together. Time has…

In his second-term inaugural speech, Bill Clinton described the United States as “the indispensable nation.” Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright wrote about this seemingly arrogant phrase in her book, Memo to the President-Elect:

“Some thought the term arrogant, but that is not how I mean it. Rather, I felt it captures the reality that most large-scale initiatives required at least some input from the United States. I also hoped the phrase would create a sense of pride among Americans, so we would be more willing to invest in overseas projects and less reluctant to take on tough assignments.


Continuing on this trend of habit-building in 2019, I’ve adopted the simple goal of reading more news. Usually this is accomplished with a scroll through the Washington Post in the morning and throughout the day. Combine that with the recent addition of multiple news sources on my twitter feed, copious podcasts throughout the day (Shoutout to The Daily and BBC Global News Podcast ❤), and daily newsletters, I genuinely have felt more knowledgeable about current events. It’s definitely a good feeling — I’ve always struggled with a sense of imposter syndrome when it comes to global affairs and staying aware…

To preface this series of book reviews, one of my biggest goals for 2019 is to read one book a week! I know this is ambitious, but I used to adore reading and I want to get back into the habit. If my current goal doesn’t work, I’ll likely switch to reading a certain amount of time everyday instead, but we’ll see. Reviewing these books below keeps me accountable on my goals and gives me a chance to catalog my thoughts after reading. Enjoy!

Democracy in Black, by Eddie S. Glaude

Democracy in Black is a book by Princeton Professor…

These past few weeks, my family has hosted relatives from Singapore who were visiting the U.S. for the first time in years. Naturally, we tried to create as wide of an East-Coast experience as possible — no D.C. or NYC cornerstone of tourism was left unturned. From the White house to the Empire State Building, we boldy ventured, stopping for more than a few pictures along the way. As a seasoned veteran of all the tourist sites we visited, this travel was run-of-the-mill for me. …

Atharv Gupta

Georgetown SFS ‘23, Always Learning. Contact me at ag1957@georgetown.edu

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