Freeman Cebu Business

Back to square one

BUSINESS AFTER BUSINESS - Romelinda Garces - The Freeman

The rising cases of COVID 19 in the world reflect how man has confronted this pandemic.  It reflects our character, and how we have just like Adam and Eve, never really made obedience part of our life.

Among the most difficult things for me to do is to obey blindly. I do not have that deep faith where one just leaps in acquiescence to a command. I have to know and understand what I am adhering to.

I admire the trust soldiers place on their commandant at the time of battle. It is as if they can only hear one voice. When he tells them to attack, they move, powered with fervor, following the unshaking authority of their officer. Keeping in reign their own fear and revving up as much courage to face the enemy.

But here and now, in the face of this unchanging and worsening scenario of the pandemic, what can we do?  Government instituted various forms of quarantine. Now the new term is circuit breaker lockdown. The COVID variants likewise moved from gamma to delta and what have you! But the same thing confronts us. A vulnerability to something we do not see that keeps on changing, evolving. But we continue to be stubborn to the basic demand of following protocols.

Governments are confused and so are we. There are those, who require the asymptomatic to just stay home because quarantine facilities and hospitals are bursting with occupants. There are those who ask that people with COVID-positive results should not to self-isolate but to confine themselves along with the other patients in quarantine sites. The Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) has made general guidelines on confronting this malady but has given each local government unit a free hand to impose their restrictions due to the incidence on ground. And true enough, every border has its own rules, confusing us all the more as to what is standard.

But the standard is simple. Stay home if you do not need to go out. Follow the protocols of washing your hands, sanitizing your areas, wearing masks, shields when necessary, and keep distance from people and get vaccinated. That does not seem to be difficult right? Still we see an influx of people in parks, buses and jeepneys, and even sidewalks, spaced shoulder to shoulder without masks. Laughing, eating, oblivious of the dangers for this momentary enjoyment. Not wearing any protective mask or even those necklaces that are said to repel the virus and bacteria.

Self-discipline and adherence to the minimum health protocols can go a long way in saving our economy. We each have a role to play. We do not even need government to institute bans, which  becomes necessary because people disobey. They go to cockfights, crowded events and meetings especially because they feel protected with the vaccines that have been rolled out.  BUT NO!  WE ARE NOT COVID-PROOF when we get vaccinated. We are just given relief from worsening. But we can still be infected.

I think the rising cases in our country is due to both the entry of a new variant and the relaxing of individuals because they think they  will no longer be affected by the virus because they have been inoculated. Sad. We go back to square one this way!

According to the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), As of July, the world has recorded 194, 890,998 infections. Of which the United States of America has 34,535,436 to its credit. Closer to home, Indonesia has 3,239,936 and the Philippines has 1555,396. In Southeast Asia the Philippines comes second to Indonesia in incidence.

No government can be totally blamed for the rise, as far as I am concerned. Our victory over this pandemic is imperative upon each of us. We have to obey the basic requirements. We cannot ask government to place masks over us or apprehend us all the time. Jails will be more crowded than hospitals that way.

We have to do our share! This is not blind obedience. This is enlightened citizenship!  We have to protect ourselves, our families and our country. Or we will get what we truly deserve, like in any sin, there is the consequence of disobedience.

May God help us all!

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