In the last past days, we have been witnessed a true snowfall in the middle of the spring! A weird reaction from Mother Nature for a pressing situation like COVID-19.A reaction yes! .That is what this virus brought us to those lucky enough to stay healthy: the fear, translated into aggressive attitudes at the individual and institutional level. Although logical it has to be controlled as citizens and institutions are the ones in charge of delivering a sense of safety. Besides, political opportunism adds more “grey” to an already obscure scenario of politicians that see on this pandemic “another crisis” instead of “the crisis of the century”. Making of resolutions as lockdown, closing borders, medical supplies or just distributing masks to the population a true partisan campaign issue. It is not precisely because of irresponsibility or lack of ethics, is certainly an out of the box attitude for an emergency of worldwide dimension. I am wondering if it is because of the shock of an unexpected crisis of the incapacity to adapt to a new reality. Anyone was prepared for a crisis of this magnitude, not logistical, neither emotionally but is it also the deploy of strength and skills that shows – in this case, exposure – the incapacity of many politicians to handle with it. Searching for the always “good resource” of an endless political game of gaining votes….not lives. As recently MP Boris Johnson said: “there will come a moment when no health service in the world could possibly cope”. I am against many of Mr. Johnson policies and a general idea of an isolated UK although, sadly, I now agree that isolation is the only way to fight back. I have written, debated and complained against the wave of thoughts that Brexiters have done, a truly boycott to the European philosophy in whom I passionately believe, trust and campaign for it. However, war times demand a new focus and currently there is only time for finding connections and common ground of thoughts and actions.
As a Political Analyst, my work is changing until we get to a certain stability. There is no room, time or energy for debate but for results, joint action and a sense of survival. Political attitudes to debate and confront positions should not be accepted. In Spain, last week, ERC opposition leader Gabriel Rufian abstain to vote the extension of the state of alarm. A decision that, at least, arouses surprise as if there is no reason to avoid taking responsibility. Just that, take responsibility not a political coalition, but an emergency coalition. There is a clear state of alarm, tangible and legally backed, however, the partisan interests seem to take the stage and play their cards without senses. Indeed, as a difference from “normal” times, there is no room for politics but to focused action. Abstention for resolutions about an emergency situation that has taken the lives of more than 12.000 people is totally unacceptable. Its part of a revolutionary change and not all political leaders are showing the capacity to lead without entering into a partisan struggle, playing a weak hand on the search for solutions.
Unfortunately, instead of joint efforts, they are political leaders that are trying to underestimate their impact as President of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro assuring their citizens that is “the same as mild flu, only dangerous to the elderly”, or other leaders that have initially hesitated about the need to apply radical measures –lockdown-.
Fear for the economy coming before the fear of losing the lives of thousands and thousands of citizens.
The idea that flu has killed more than COVID-19 is it useless and untrue, despite the fact that we need to move beyond mathematical calculations but effective decisions that completely erase the virus from our lives. That only impacts vulnerables is another mistake as is an extremely contagious virus that spreads their poisonous effect from weak to healthy and strong people without limits. The fact that there is a high average of deaths among the elderly population is only in terms of chances to recover rather than the real possibility that young people can be infected. The death toll during swine-flu of 2009 was 203.000 worldwide, meanwhile corona virus 1.276.302 –at today- and counting. Even that, they are still citizens and political leaders that claim to end lockdown and bring the economy back. As if opening no essential services like shops, ignoring the pandemic and keeping a few clients will rescue them from the crisis. We are in an emergency, including the economic and financial side, an irreversible and voluntary fall down that demands innovation and international cooperation to get through. We must stop to move forward. Is it proven that social distancing is not enough and a complete lockdown –just with essential services- is the only tool that individuals can effectively stop the relentless impact of the virus.
COVID-19 comes to put the world upside down, a snowfall in spring that shakes up our structures and paradoxically reinforces our principles by accepting opposite views. In my case, a defender of the philosophy of the European Union, global institutions and against isolationist policies, now, I have to accept that only by isolation, closing borders and a strong sense of national defences within international cooperation, is when we are going to succeed.International cooperation is not the same as global action and for this particular crisis, we do not need global actions but strengthen national structures.
“All together” gains a new meaning and turns into a new scenario in which individually we need to be isolated to survive, to close borders to stop the spread and to act locally to build resilience. Being humble, accepting that in times of change only getting stuck is wrong…..
COVIXT like a snowfall in spring, it only matters, an exit from the pandemic.