Do you know anyone who has been infected with coronavirus, or even someone who has died? Chances are you don’t.
And as most people are not directly affected by the virus, we could be forgiven for feeling a numbness as officials, websites and news organizations bandy around numbers of Covid-19 victims as if they were totting up an evening’s takings at a bar.
As of July 9, Mexico’s death toll had reached 33,526, a figure that authorities concede may be too low due to scores of fatalities never making it into official statistics. While some politicians – on both sides of the border – prefer not to mention the victims as they seek to play down the seriousness of the pandemic for political reasons, family members are keen to point out that each person represents a life cut short. And they would like us to remember that.
Using the hashtag #NoSonSóloNúmeros (They Aren’t Just Numbers), relatives of the deceased in Mexico are giving a name, face and history to their departed loved ones via social media. Many are posting photos or videos, often providing a brief explanation of why they were so loved and will be so missed.