Why Is It so Hard to Mourn the Vast Number of COVID Dead?

An Empathy Scientist Reveals How Our Brains Get in the Way of Comprehending Calamity on This Scale

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced the first U.S. death from COVID-19 on February 29. Within a month, more than 1,000 Americans were dying on a single day. Since then, we’ve reached that daily number many times over. Some days, more than 2,500 people have died. The U.S. recently surpassed another marker: over 277,000 individuals dead.

And yet: many are largely disconnected from the pain, unwilling or unable to recognize or process the loss.

Where is the collective mourning? I am an empathy scientist, and I can …

Mourning the Loss of a True Workingman’s Bridge

The Bay Bridge Was Never as Famous as the Golden Gate, but It Was Our Most Innovative

On November 14, if all goes as scheduled, a monumental piece of engineering will unceremoniously sink beneath the San Francisco Bay. Known as “E3,” it is the largest load-bearing pier …