March 16, 2020-
In the Turkish Netflix series, “The Protector”, the complex villain tells the title character how easy he made it for her to both subject the populace of Istanbul to an epidemic of plague and to subsequently present the people with a “cure”, which had consequences he couldn’t foresee.
The current reaction of many people to the menace of Coronavirus 19 is similar to that of the Turkish masses, in the SciFi drama. Fear has led many to either abandon trust in the ability of government, medical professionals and humanitarian organizations or to cling even more tightly to shopworn ideologies and biases, vis-a-vis ANY intervention by those in authority, while confronting this pandemic.
Magical thinking, and trust in the platitudes of populists and demagogues, both in the TV series and in much of the American scene today, has replaced logic and fortitude. See someone whose politics they dislike, and the bleats go up-and on.
I have to observe, and evaluate, the efforts being made by ALL responsible parties, and never mind their ideologies. Any less, and the pandemic will not see its “curve flattened”; rather, it will continue to spike, again and again-like the Plagues of the Fourteenth and Sixteenth Centuries. The experience of Europeans, during the first plague, is instructive for us now. Relying on the words of the ignorant will only reap horror.
Certitude, in this current time of pestilence, can only be found in placing trust in competent physicians and proactive government officials-regardless of one’s own ideology.