24 Mar No one is lobbying for the rights of the virus
For the first time in living memory, or ever… the world is united. United! That is a big deal. Unification is most likely to occur in the face of a common enemy. We have seen this across multiple wars, or in the fight against human injustices & some of you probably have experienced this in you own house, when your children stop bickering and unite against you as parents, when they feel unfairly treated e.g. the Wi-Fi password is changed! But in most of these situations there are two sides: we had Axis vs Allied powers, there are those who supported the current status quo and those that were against it e.g. American Civil Rights movement, Anti-Apartheid, antislavery movements etc. But never before has the unity been so all inclusive and so visible, largely thanks to the incredible impact of the media (mostly social media, but let’s give traditional media a shout out!).
Yesterday I was forced into watching GCN (Global Cycling Network) on YouTube. The cycling community share a common language and culture wherever you are… and make consistent jokes about traffic lights, snot rockets and bicycle seats… but here on this channel the 2 presenters in the UK are talking about cycling safely or should we be cycling at all in these times? This on the very same day and moment that the cycle tour in South Africa that we have been working towards gets cancelled. Same conversation, same thinking, nations apart.
That made me think about the bigger picture of unity that has been created amidst this unusual situation. The common enemy is death. Oddly, that isn’t a new enemy, and will always be there, but this time it is preventable early death. And no one is on deaths side. No one is lobbying for the rights of the virus or twisting religious doctrine to substantiate their point of view. There aren’t two sides to this war. Just one united front. Really miraculous that the human race can forget for a while all the myriad of issues that pull us apart and stand united (but suitably far from each other & with very clean hands) against this virus.
Often when one watches news or read news streams it is with an interested detachment. The US-Mexican Wall and US politics is something over there… Brexit and its impact might have downstream impact but for now it is over there… Fires in Australia are devastating, but over there…. Now, we seem to be sitting on the same ball orbiting around the same sun in very much a shared experience. It is over there, but it is also over here and next door & around the corner and regardless of your race, gender, sexual orientation, bank account, fitness status, employment status, religious beliefs, citizenship or breakfast cereal preference we are in this together.
For a moment the other stuff, just isn’t really that important. Even the newsreaders sound rather apologetic for reporting on politics when the headline is about a global death toll.
With no idea how long we are in this for, I do hope and pray that we can hold on to this one-world ethos longer than the Corona virus has a hold on us.