Saving The Day

Posted on 16 March 2020

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I’ve just come back from running a few errands. I had to deposit a cheque at the bank, and since I’m a combine errands kind of person, I thought I would pick up a few things.

I had already seen the empty toilet paper aisles over a week ago, when people panicked over the potential spread of COVID-19 in their region. My hope was that this was going to be a single burst of foolishness.

Yesterday I picked up a pizza on the way home from a small meeting. At the supermarket frozen vegetable fridges were emptied, pasta was emptied, flour was emptied. Today two different butchers were completely sold out, evidently within the first hour of opening.

I don’t know if I want to cry or yell!

This hoarding is the height of “I’m taking care of me and mine…the rest of you can go starve.”

Our society only exists because we offer one another a complex web of support. If our doctors and nurses can’t obtain masks because of hoarding, they become sick and you can’t receive treatment for any type of medical condition, including COVID-19. We overwhelm supermarkets with requests for delivery service of an unnecessary excess of goods, then they will do as has been done today by companies such as Coles: shut down the service. This harms people who have been relying on this service due to disability and chronic illness. The list of what can and will go wrong continues.

For a long time we have needed government plans in place to face these sorts of crises. We need emergency stores of food within every community, that are regularly sold off cheaply to the public as surplus when new stores come in. These are then available when a community faces, fires, floods, epidemics, etc. We need decentralised rationing software. Everyone always has enough…everyone. Not just the greedy jerks who take more than their fair share. We need a universal basic income, so that people can stay at home as necessary without losing their ability to pay for food and housing.

As things stand we are hitting a serious economic bump in the road. COVID-19 is going to take more months to resolve, and quite possibly longer. In the meantime businesses are already going belly up, and the more businesses fail…the more businesses fail in a domino effect.

And much of this can be fixed. Are you listening? Much of this can be fixed, if we choose to work together and consider our collective well-being, including that of the rest of our living world.

COVID-19, like Mad Cow Disease and a number of other pathogens, came into being because of our mistreatment of the animals we rely upon for food. These pathogens are spreading effectively because of our mistreatment of one another: not providing healthcare for all, not providing safety nets for all, creating an everyone for themselves culture.

We are all scared.

We have to learn how to be good allies quick smart to see this through. Start asking what you can do to help and thank those who already are helping.

Kindness will save the day,

Katherine


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