There is an unsettling disconnect in the rhythms of South Carolina these days, when normalcy and crisis clash and co-reign.
More than a year and a half into the coronavirus pandemic that has killed some 12,000 South Carolinians — nearly 1,900 dead in the past month alone, as the fatality rate speeds up — early fall life looks much like it always has for many people who crowd into restaurants, sporting events, concerts and church services.
While tens of thousands gather in college football stadiums, hospitals strain under a worsening surge of COVID-19 patients. While one community mourns the deaths of two schoolchildren, among COVID’s youngest victims, passionate crowds fill school board and council chambers to protest mask mandates. While lines of cars wait for hours at a drive-thru coronavirus testing site in the state capital, half of the state’s eligible residents still wait or refuse to be vaccinated.
The discord is striking in that each of these moments coexist with the others — the mirth alongside the sorrow, the fear alongside the vitriol.
As the pandemic worsens, these clashing moments mingle across the Palmetto State.
Tens of thousands gather in college football stadiums, while hospital ICUs filled with hundreds verge on chaos in South Carolina. As the pandemic worsens, clashing moments mingle in day-to-day life across the state. https://t.co/PwQIlYN8Ou
— The State Newspaper (@thestate) October 4, 2021