When the initial threat of the Covid-19 infection entered Europe I automatically started practicing ‘social distancing’ to the extent that I prematurely stopped all my fully paid for dance lessons that I was attending and I stopped going to salsa parties. I was not so much afraid of getting infected myself. I was more frightened of me being responsible for any initial infection amongst my family, friends and work colleagues thereby putting them and their livelihoods in unnecessary danger.
However I was also initially against the wearing of face masks in public due to the terrible shortage in the hospital and caregiving sectors. Wearing a mask on the street seemed like a selfish act taking it away from those who needed it the most in the front line battle against this disease. Additionally the official policy on national and international levels such as the W.H.O. repeatedly told us that wearing a face mask in public served no real purpose. But now public health policy has changed advising us to wear face masks in public in general. The new slogan being
‘Wearing a facemask is not for your protection it is for others’
When you wear a mask it shows your solidarity and concern for others around you because you may have already been infected without showing any symptoms. We have now entered a situation where we begin to feel guilty and selfish if we don’t wear one.
However for some strange reason I am now having difficulty with this line of reasoning and the fact that this is going to become a part of my daily attire in general public life.
One reason has to do with what they told us initially when they obviously knew otherwise. The reasoning behind the ‘little white lie’ being that they had to maintain this viewpoint to protect the rapidly diminishing supply does not change the fact that it was ‘a lie’ or just basic misinformation coming from our official sources. It does not seem to be a very good way to build and maintain trust with an audience. It also shows how much confidence and trust they have in the general public. They do not believe in the common good spirit of the community as a whole in a crisis situation. However the facts have clearly proven otherwise. There has been a large show of human solidarity, self sacrifice and support for one another with many donations of face masks being given to those institutions that needed it. I personally believe that if they had just told us the simple plain truth in the first place that a large percentage of the general public would have still donated any facemasks that they possesed and refrained from buying and hoarding masks that they did not have.
This only causes us to question current information being published and leaves us wondering about other information that we are not being told.
What adds to our confusion is that unofficial sources and individuals (the so called fake news sources) were advising people to wear masks in public in direct contradiction to official government statements. We are now also hearing of reports of possible manipulation of Covid-19 death rate statistics. If this is true why would anyone want to manipulate these statistics? In our current news climate it almost seems that this virus is responsible for every fatality taking place on the planet right now. Covid-19 is finishing of the job that other illnesses, diseases and basic life expectancy would normally do. It seems that even someone that dies in a car accident is tested for Covid-19 and if he or she is positive then they can add that to the statistics as well. (Note I said ‘it seems’ I am not saying that this has been done)
The psychological fear factor that has been generated by these statistics and constant official news reporting seems to be causing more harm than the virus itself. How can our bodies fight against any disease if it is already riddled with so much fear?
We all need to realise that despite coming into the information age we have now entered the age of misinformation where we cannot automatically accept and trust anything we are being told from any source official or unofficial. We have check, double check and compare. We have the capacity to think and the right to question, especially things that will affect us directly sooner or later.
All of a sudden this mask that was originally designed as a tool of personal safety and protection seems to becoming a tool of control and a symbol of prevention of freedom of speech. Because whenever anyone does questions current government policy or offers alternative solutions many are quickly silenced and censored in the name of public health and safety and avoiding of unnecessary social unrest.
When I observe how some react a horrible gut feeling keeps surfacing within me that says; they have created a monster to validate all these unprecedented restrictions of our basic human rights and freedoms. Lockdown, control of our movements, our activity, social and family interaction. They have created a virus that can be used as a scapegoat for the long overdue global recession that is now inevitable while destroying so many jobs, livelihoods and businesses that will make millions of people completely dependant on the state for financial and physical survival. They have literally taken away our fundamental human rights and freedoms turning this facemask into a symbol of mass control instead of its original purpose of personal protection.
You don’t like wearing a mask? No problem the vaccine is coming. Yes if the the mask does not work they can always just vaccinate us into submission.
Believe it or not I am not totally against vaccinations I have personally been vaccinated and I allowed my children to be vaccinated as well. If I base my limited knowledge of history concerning life expectancy and health then I feel that the development and science of medicine has played a major role in our general and long term health and well being. My main concern and issue is with the vast amounts of profits that are associated with and generated with the development and sale of vaccines. Profits that go to a very small group of people. What initially served as a pure noble desire to improve and save lives has now been tainted by big business and profits. Money and profits nurtures greed, dishonesty and corruption and infect the program negatively.
In addition to this is the complete exemption from liability. Based on some reports concerning vaccine programs in various countries where groups of people including children have unwittingly served as guinea pigs for the testing of vaccines that have not only failed but initiated horrific side effects. The sponsors and promoters being completely free from any legal or moral responsibility.
I also do not understand why very little attention is being given to how we can possibly reduce at least the severity of symptoms by taking care of ourselves physically, emotionally and psychologically. Yes I am talking with a certain amount of ignorance as regards how these viruses attack us and that sometimes the severity is related to an overreaction of our immune system. We still have so much more to learn about these viruses but we also still have so much more to learn about the full effectiveness and side effects of existing vaccines never mind the development of new ones. Finding the perfect balance is no easy task but this should never justify imbalance, a seemingly blatant refusal to examine alternative solutions and remedies and with seeming disregard for our fundamental human rights, freedom of choice and freedom of movement.
I hope I am wrong. I do not want to believe that individuals or organisations would purposely do something like this. Whatever the real truth is we found ourselves in a situation now where we do need to take precautionary measures now and support any long term sustainable remedy, treatment or even a vaccine in the future that has been thorougly tested in a ethically correct way. A place where I can fully get my head around wearing a face mask in public because the emphasis is on ….
protection and not control.
I don’t want to influence, I want to inspire.
I don’t want to manipulate, I want to motivate.
I don’t want to scare, I want to encourage.
I don’t want to control, I want to cooperate.
I don’t want to resist, I just want to understand.
Photo credits: cottonbro in Pexel https://instagram.com/cottonbro?igshid=7lf67udkzo9z