Editorial: Pandemic, Not Protest

by | Apr 10, 2020 | Arts & Life, Uncategorized

Man wearing colourful hat pointing at camera

Supplied photo.

By Elijah O’Donnell
Entertainment Editor

Thanks to COVID-19, we are seeing the most pure unbridled social change in recent memory, at least since I can remember.

We have seen people locking their doors, supermarket shelves going empty minutes after opening and entire countries going into lockdown in an attempt to limit the spread of this virus.

The worst part is how easy it is to get stuck in the ‘doom and gloom’ cycle of one horror story to the next: India declaring a 21-day lockdown, the youngest death in the Canada, and seemingly everyone finding themselves without work at once.

But there is a light in this tunnel, and not just at the end. We have to look at all of the good in the world right now.

The best way I can visualize this for myself is seeing how this pandemic is kickstarting society in much the same way World War ll kickstarted the economy.

It’s funny how this virus is finally doing what protest has been trying to do for years. People have been protesting for climate action, universal income, basic rights for workers, better conditions or the elderly in care homes and countless other issues for years now. The whole point of a protest is to try and disrupt business-as-usual, otherwise, nothing gets done and people simply go on living life as is.

Well now that business-as-usual has not only been disrupted but almost totally destroyed, so many issues have finally been addressed.

We’re seeing many governments implementing a rudimentary universal income in the form of Emergency Relief Benefits.

Folks in elderly care homes are getting increased care and attention with smaller, more personal communities as opposed to the usual large form care facilities. We’re seeing that the most important parts of the workforce aren’t the billionaires or CEOs, but the frontline workers. The doctors and nurses, delivery drivers, sanitation workers and anyone else that makes up the bulk of the workforce are the real gears of society.

Plus numerous other smaller issues like global emissions being way down, oil and gas seeing a decline in importance and more cleanly, hygienic habits being adopted worldwide.

All it took was pandemic, not protest.

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