Chaos and confusion after this crisis?
WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus B. Jimenez (The Freeman) - April 5, 2020 - 12:00am

I have a strong premonition that the year 2020, which started with the Taal eruption, followed by the COVID-19 crisis, will still bring more sorrow and difficulties to our nation and people.

I have prayed very hard for this coronavirus crisis to end, but I shudder more at the very thought of what will happen after. It has been predicted that the whole world will experience an unprecedented recession, 25 million jobs will be lost worldwide, and the problems of poverty, hunger, disease, and social unrest will most likely follow. Small and medium industries will be forced to close, and small enterprises will fold up in bankruptcy and insolvency. Loans will be unpaid, mortgages foreclosed. Millions will lose their homes. And chaos shall rock humanity. Crimes against property will rise as the poor may go on a stealing and robbing rampage just to feed their starving families.

Even our relatives in the USA won't be able to help, as they themselves are also being hit with even more intensity and gravity. OFWs in Europe, especially in Italy and Spain may find themselves jobless and may come home empty-handed. That means their children cannot continue studying in private universities and colleges. Some of their real estate amortizations may not be paid and their families may soon be homeless. Even those working in the Middle East and also in Asia, like in Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, and Malaysia, aren’t spared. Their employers were also hit and thus, their jobs may also be in jeopardy.

Government cannot afford to subsidize 100% the recovery of the whole country. Government is on heavy debts from foreign as well as domestic lenders. Tax collections and customs duties are expected to suffer, since production and movement of goods were halted and both industry and trade have practically been compelled to stop. People aren’t able to work as everyone is on quarantine, and the whole country is on lockdown. The economic and financial implications of this crisis are definitely beyond pecuniary estimation.

With crimes rising, and lives and properties in jeopardy, there shall be chaos, confusion, and even conflagration of unprecedented and earthshaking magnitude and duration. There shall be a lot of tears and gnashing of teeth, to borrow biblical passages. It seems that the world is again like Sodom and Gomorrah. There are too many deaths and the hospitals are full. The Intensive Care Units and emergency rooms are overcrowded, and healthcare providers are also dying of fatigue and infection. This is a very serious crisis, not just in our country but in almost 100 countries worldwide.

We can all pray hard but we shouldn’t only pray, we should also spray ourselves with alcohol. Spray and pray and brace ourselves for a major, major chaos, confusions and conflagration. I shudder to even think of it all.

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