Baby Bust

I predict a leveling of the population in nine months.

Why? Hint: “social distancing” is the buzz-term at the start of the new ’20s.

I predict that the repercussions of the Coronavirus COVID-19 will be felt for decades and may possibly mark the momentous event that defines the next generation after the iGeneration – the successors to the Millennials who are now starting to produce families of their own (Covidgen?).

All of that may be on hold due to COVID-19. Of all of the ways to contract a disease, sexual activity is one of the most efficient. People will always have sex but the casual sex that accidentally turns into a pregnancy is probably less likely to happen. Even married couples may curb their activity for the duration of the crisis.

The Baby Boom generation was marked by soldiers returning from World War II and starting families. The Millennials were marked by the start of the New Millennium and iGen by being born in the new Millennium. My generation, Generation X, has the most fuzzy delineation of the three is sandwiched between the Boomers and the Millennials.

In market terms, the opposite of a boom is a bust (which is also a current danger – a recession does look to be on the horizon) and, while people are confined in voluntary quarantine, the likelihood that they will be engaging in sexual congress is decreased due to contagion.

Furthermore, Snopes.com refutes the argument that being confined due to a disaster leads to a baby boom so we can’t count on that mythical phenomenon to counter the effects of “social distancing”. Not only will there be less hookups and less social meetings leading to match-ups, there won’t be a rush to jump into bed due to boredom.

Perhaps the effects will be too small to be noticed. Perhaps the disease will fade into history like smallpox and cholera. However, I have never seen anything like this before – even bubonic plague (which, despite speculations about my age, I was not alive for) was geographically isolated and while AIDS spread across the world you couldn’t get it by breathing the same air as someone else at the supermarket.

If the dictum is to stay six feet away from each other I don’t see many people jumping at the opportunity to reduce that distance to full physical contact. New pregnancies will slow down and in nine months, a baby bust.

In other prediction news, I predict more companies moving to cyberspace even after the crisis. When business owners notice no change in productivity for letting their employees work at home where possible, they will begin to question why they’re paying for office space.