“We are all in this together” a quote by Lily Tomlin which is often repeated on the internet in regards to Coronavirus these days. A number of inspiring articles on how should we turn this unfortunate situation and lockdown into something meaningful are published every day. I got so much inspired about an opportunity of using these slow and long days for things and activities I did not find time for in the past months or even years. This is all so amazing, how people can uplift and support each other by seeing something little positive in the world´s tragedy. I am not an expert on Coronavirus but I try to keep myself updated and sufficiently educated about this issue on the level of an average person. However, I want to share my personal feeling about the current situation from the perspective- not factual, inspirational nor educational, but human.
It is very simple. I feel disappointed. Why so negative?
Let me explain. Firstly, as a family member, colleague, girlfriend, and friend I do feel a lot of support, love and caring from all the members of my close circle and I do my best to give my love and support to them too. During the recent days, we all are checking on our beloved ones and people we care about a little bit more carefully and more often than usual, naturally, due to the seriousness of the situation. But it seems to me, it ends there. When no string and connection is attached to a person, we simply consider that person a “stranger”, a “competition” someone we have no reason to care about. Today, we are witnessing how people fight over toilet paper, or just buying an unnecessary number of items. Pharmacies in some countries are being sold out on paracetamol, vitamins, and medicine, which won´t treat COVID-19 anyway. People in pharmacies buying medicine, which won´t save them from Coronavirus, but they are forgetting, that there are still people, who are getting sick from regular illnesses and are in need of basic medicine?
Instead, these people selfishly putting their own needs ahead of the needs of people “outside of their circle”, “strangers”, who are all a part of the community.
Secondly, condemnation and judgment of other people´s actions. Either you are labeled as hysterical by staying locked in the home and behave in accordance with all government´s official restrictions or recommendations while wearing a face mask, or you are a selfish person who put others in danger because you take a walk in the park during a sunny day. We judge, based on our own approach to the situation and own believes. I am not talking about what is responsible to do and what’s not, I am talking about hatred which we spread amongst each other, rather than try to understand the reason behind their behavior. Are people missing knowledge about the seriousness of the situation, or they are just ignorant or irresponsible by putting themselves and others into risk? This is another topic to assess, I am not aiming for this. What I try to express, is how we behave towards these strangers. As I see it, outside of our close circle, we are not humans, we do not act as “we are all in this together” community. If we do not start spreading care and love towards “strangers” instead of judgment and hate, if we do not stop making our own exception for going to a café or outside, while our local situation is dangerous, we are not all in this together, we are in this on our own.
What the world needs today, is that all of us sit down and think about what does it mean to be part of the local, regional and world community and understand, that another “stranger´s” problem is also my problem. Let´s use this situation not just for decluttering our messy apartments, catching up on unfinished books but also let´s rethink what being part of the community really means and feels. Then we will not just BE all in this together, we will FEEL that we are in this together from every corner, supermarket and pharmacy we take a step in.