Buying in bulk has a much larger cost

Amidst the global coronavirus pandemic, many individuals within the United States are living in panic as they are believing circulated social media posts with misinformation about the illness and spreading it to larger audiences.

This misinformation is creating a cycle of ignorance, confusion and hysteria.

Many individuals and families are stocking up on essentials such as bottled water, diapers, toilet paper, cleaning supplies and food in massive quantities. While it is not a bad thing to be weary in our current situation, the consequence of loading up on essentials is being overlooked.

Low income families and individuals who need these essentials will be left in the dark to suffer without them.

Their difficulty to find a location to buy available necessities exhibits ignorance and classism from people who are able to afford buying essentials in such enormous quantities.

As my family and I have struggled financially for the majority of my life, being apart of the people who get the short end of the stick during this pandemic is frightening.

Every time we go shopping for cleaning supplies or toilet paper, we never know if there will be any left for us; if there is, we have to scramble and make the most of what’s available.

Since California Governor Gavin Newsom mandated the Stay at Home Order for the entire state in March, I recall many weeks where my family and I had to use a small tissue box instead of paper towels.

We even had to go as far as using napkins from the dollar store as toilet paper because actual toilet paper was sold out everywhere else.

It is unacceptable that people who live in poverty must hope for the best when we go out to buy needed essentials.

We find ourselves grasping for the scraps of what is left in the aisles of stores because we are disproportionately being affected by this pandemic.

Children and young people within my local community who are not able to have their free meals ensured at school anymore are also being affected by this.

They are the growing youth in my city and knowing that many of these individuals are apart of low income families who are also being impacted is disheartening, as I was one of them too.

However, Centinela Valley Union High School District has been providing people that are 18 years and under with free meals, regardless of being a student within the district.

Regarding our El Camino College community, students that are in need of food during this time can still use the school’s food pantry while campus is shutdown.

“Warrior Cupboard” is providing registered students of this spring semester with food, which I think is an amazing accommodation for students as this pandemic has called for many mandates.

As this is a ray of hope during these trying times, it allows me to feel secure as I can see some aspects within my community being supported in this way.

Still, I find it burdensome knowing that other families and people are remaining disadvantaged.

My loved ones and I still struggle to find available necessities when we shop, but if we have enough of what we need we can afford to share our goods with others in similar situations.

I never feel the need to hoard goods or essentials from others who need them, especially during the circumstances of this pandemic.

Even though there have been many times where my family and I had a hard time finding basic needs, when we have them to spare we’re always willing to give someone a helping hand.

In the words of Assata Shakur, “we must love each other and support each other,” especially in the face of adversity like this.