PLAY THE BALL, NOT THE MAN
Throughout my time as an educator and writer (more recently a Linked In contributor and blogger) I have tried very hard to focus on issues and not directly on people who may be involved with process. It is the issue that is important rather than direct focus on people who may be involved.
In respect of the coronavirus and its impact upon Australia and Australians, I find it hard to remain within that frame of comment.
The issues surrounding COVID-19 are gripping Australia and indeed the world. To their credit, Australian Governments at every level are mounting realistic campaigns of response to this contagion. However, their intentions and efforts have been and are being thwarted by people of all ages who, from the onset of the virus, have chosen courses of action that pose a threat for themselves and for others. AND THEY DON’T CARE UNTIL THE PROVERBIAL HITS THE FAN: WHEN THAT HAPPENS THEY CRY OFF POOR AND WANT THE GOVERNMENT(S) TO BAIL THEM OUT OF THEIR SELF CREATED PREDICAMENTS.
The examples of stupidly, crass, uncaring selfishness and flagrant disregard for others (as well as themselves) are epitomised in any number of examples of selfish, stupid (and more recently illegal) behaviour.
I share just a few.
• The hundreds and indeed thousands of Australians who have taken passage on cruise ships and gone cruising after the virus broke out and people became aware of its infectious potential and spread.
• The hundreds and indeed thousands of Australians who have left by air on overseas holidays after the announcement of this deadly virus became known.
• The selfishness of travel companies, especially those connected with cruising, who appealed to people to sail into danger because of special travel deals being offered.
• The idiocy and crass stupidity of people who, with the virus closing in and states/territories limiting travel nevertheless elected to travel interstate on holiday and now find themselves well and truly flummoxed by imposed travel restrictions.
• The arrant disregard for the welfare of others by people who have taken commercial plane flights to their home state and territories while knowing or suspecting they were infected with the virus
• The vile misconduct of people who have deliberated violated the terms of isolation after having been placed into self-quarantine because of their association with the virus.
• The wickedness of those who are required to self isolate, but who have given false addresses about their physical location to authorities.
• The crass stupidity of people who were happy to go to bridge parties, clubs, pubs, the beach and other places once social distancing provisions had come into place.
• The short sightedness of officials who allowed the unchecked disembarkation of ‘Ruby Princess’ passengers. This after being told by staff on the ship that there were no issues. (Post the virus, this story and similar releases suggesting that passengers on ships are fine when they are not, should be fully investigated with legal consequences for any non disclosure being an option).
• The greed and selfishness manifest by a minority of people (but a minority of many hundreds) who stripped and continue to strip shelves bare of essential products.
• The wrongfulness of those who left cities in vehicles to strip stores in nearby towns of essentials needed by locals.
This is not a list exhausted of examples illustrating wrong doing. It demonstrates how much harder it is for authorities to manage major health and economic issues when confronted with issues of this nature.
When “I” comes before and replaces “we” to the extent that has occurred, a picture of selfishness and self-centredness emerges; one that distorts the efforts and intentions of authorities and one that shows how little too many care about our Australian community as a whole.