I don’t know what people a hundred years will say about COVID-19. People only talk about the death tolls of the Spanish Flu a hundred years ago. But in the middle of this, I see life coming into focus as a society like never before. We’re rationing our attention onto important things. individuals, businesses, and the government are actually working together to get us through so much of the economy being on pause.
Sure there is the usual din of unhelpful banter — conspiracy theories, politicization, and bumper-sticker wisdom either fear-mongering or dismissing concern as fear, But for once it seems outweighed — not by people towing party lines and parroting headlines — but by thoughtful considerations. Just at a moment where I’ve questioned mankind’s ability to transcend selfish nature as a whole, the masses surprise me. People, for the most part, are staying home out of concern for others. A disinterested minority are ignoring sense and respect for neighbors. And we can tell the sheep from the goats now. But time will tell if things get rough just what that balance is.
But I prefer the silver lining. I really think a LOT of good is already coming out of this — people are realizing there are ways to work from home, count on delivery services, and transact all sorts of business online. We’re finally doing some of the things other countries have been doing for a decade or more. Organizations are actually reaching out to non-attending members for wellness checks, perhaps for the first time, and doing video meetings with better attendance than they usually have. We just have to hope these become habits rather than emergency measures in the future.