The first condition for people to agree to the public health directives that are imposed on them is not to give them the impression that they are taken for thick. Unfortunately, by refusing to admit that the current situation imposed in the red zone is one of containment, that is exactly what we are doing.
Let François Legault go and tell a person who lives alone that his current condition is not exactly the same as in April. Let Christian Dubé convince a restaurateur who had to close his room or a cultural worker who is on the PCRE that the economy is open. That Horacio Arruda explains to a grandmother who cannot see her grandchildren that our periods do not correspond to what the WHO calls confinement. We’ll talk about it later.
Between spring and today, there are two things that have changed: children can go to school, which is not insignificant, and more businesses are opened. For the rest, we are in a “normality” where simply hanging out in a cafe is prohibited.
Basically, people still can’t go to their parents or entertain their friends, but they can go to work and shop. We have the right to spend, but not to socialize. Enter the title of your favorite futuristic dystopia here.
And the Prime Minister seems to be magnanimous when he says he does not intend to institute a curfew like in France. Is that because you’d like us to go after nine o’clock anyway? Sit on a park bench in the rain?
Then we were asked yesterday to reduce our contact with other people even further. Who do you think telecommuting bachelor should cut? The concierge of his building? His dog ?
Naming things wrong
It is not so much to criticize this approach of partial economic containment and complete social containment. Even if the WHO is telling us today that this cannot be the main measure in the fight against the pandemic, it unfortunately seems to be the only one from which the Quebec government manages to draw results. In short, we don’t seem to have much choice, but it would be important to at least be able to call a spade a spade.
“To name things badly is to add to the unhappiness of the world”, said Albert Camus. Also, by refusing to admit that their strategy to slow the virus is to reduce the social capital of our community as much as possible, our leaders mainly give the impression of not being aware of what they are asking of people.
This social estrangement is best experienced when someone is waiting for us in a big house, when we subscribe to two or three video-on-demand services, have tons of relatives and friends to call on FaceTime and ‘we can drive the children back to school. For some, it’s almost a vacation.
In the poverty of a three and a half, however, or when you have to isolate yourself with the little ones at home because you have been waiting for eight days for the result of a screening test after a fever flare, it is lived differently, and this situation has a name. It’s called containment.
When you get there, you can tell people “you are not confined, you can go buy your rigs at La Baie!” The only result you will get is to disgust them.
New “new normal”
The government is coming to the end of its rope and it would be great, for the good of all of us, if it found out. The satisfaction rate will not stay at 70% forever and the recruitment of conspirators continues to be in full swing. And it’s not as if we already had a surplus of mental health resources before the pandemic.
We were given to understand yesterday that at the end of the “28 days which we knew would not be 28 days”, we may find the privilege of going to the gyms. This is fair and good.
It nevertheless seems to mean that in the eyes of the government, social confinement, the impossibility of seeing relatives and friends not just for fun, but especially to share their sorrows and difficulties, is the new “new normal” “. If we’re nice, there will be permissions for Halloween and Christmas.
It won’t do. We will have to find something else to counter the virus. One cannot think that isolating people in their own right can be a good way to get through the worst crisis they will have seen in their lifetime. Because the presence that we need to share the ordeals, it is difficult to share in a Zoom conference.
Unfortunately, the government does not even seem to realize that is what it is asking people. If so, he would call it containment.