A digital multimeter is more than the sum of its parts, but unfortunately, its parts are going to be increasingly hard to find. Digital multimeters that use an LCD or LED display require Lead and Phosphate respectively. High demand for LED in the U.S has led to a 14-month shortage and price inflation. Twisting the knife in deeper to multimeter manufacturing, COVID-19 has led to the shutting down of mines for compliance with safety regulations. This could be
Compensated for if the United States was capable of importing lead from other countries but this isn’t possible for two reasons. First, COVID-19 has stalled the ability for shipments of any kind to make its way across country borders for fear of spreading the disease. Second, COVID-19 has caused extreme tension between the US and China, who the United States is reliant on for the importation of lead. Politicians have adopted rhetoric that aims at Americans’ frustrations at China, calling COVID-19, “the China virus”. This narrative that COVID-19 is the fault of the Chinese has been substantiated by policies that heavily tax goods imported from China.
Gallium-Phosphate is essential to the creation of LEDs. However, the phosphate needed to create the chemical compound is also experiencing a shortage. This shortage is also more severe than the aforementioned lead shortage because unlike lead, which America is more sufficient in mining rather than importing, phosphate is almost exclusively imported from Russia and China, as well as Northern Africa to a lesser extent. The United States’ relationship with Russia has also deteriorated due to rising political tensions and accusations of Russian interference with American affairs. Russia most recently made headlines for its successful
Attack on the Department of Homeland Security. Despite billions of dollars dedicated to Cyber-infrastructure, it seems that the United States government’s fighting over how to deal with COVID-19 provided enough of a distraction to allow Russia to steal sensitive information about six government agencies and over one hundred companies. COVID-19 has created global hostility and political turmoil that can be felt on both on a macroscopic scale through policies and a microscopic scale through niche markets like the digital multimeter for electricians. At the beginning of the semester, I had over a 3.0 and I was doing okay in school, but then my mom got hurt again. I ended up with a 2.980 for the fall semester and one of my scholarships requires me to maintain a 3.0. I can barely afford college. I literally give all my money to my mother so she can pay bills. I cannot get a job because I have to take care of my mother. This virus has been hard on my family because it has played a part in our dog attacking us, me not being able to go into the doctor’s office with my mother, and just me not being able to experience my monumental moments. I work so hard to maintain my grades, but I can only spread myself so thin. It does not mean I am not going to stop striving for what I need to do. I Will work hard to maintain my grades and take care of my family.