If COVID19 Can’t Bring Us Together Nothing Will
by Shelley (c) 8-Apr-2020
I think we can all agree that we are fighting a common enemy. At the writing of this post 81,478 lives have been lost to COVID19, and infections have long surpassed 1 million worldwide. Countries are in lockdown, there is great uncertainty and the world is gasping for breath, literally and figuratively. These are extraordinary times like we have never witnessed, and you would think that we would cling to each other, help each other, defend each other against this common enemy, but yet we squabble among ourselves like seagulls on a beach fighting for that last piece of tossed watermelon rind.
Of course, the divisiveness is not easily apparent in many countries, and doesn’t exist in some, however here in the west it’s a free for all. A few days earlier, reports of shipments of N95 masks being blocked from leaving the US incited anger and debate. 
Not only has the US blocked shipments of masks to Canada and Latin America. It has also blocked the shipment of ventilators to Barbados. Additionally, buying medical supplies at inflated prices while circumventing previously agreed upon contracts with other countries, is a version of “modern day piracy” as termed by The Guardian. 
N95 masks, ventilators and personal protective equipment are in high demand. In countries that did very little to prepare, the game to acquire these materials is on, leaving other poorer or defenseless countries to fend for themselves. Is this a form of bullying? And when all is said and done, what becomes of the relationships that are damaged?
Beyond the global squabbling, it has been noted that domestic violence is on the rise. 
As families are sequestered together, not all is wine and roses. Perhaps more wine than roses and that may be the issue. If there were cracks in your domestic relationships before, then those cracks have turned to chasms as many families are confined to their homes and time spent together is enforced.
In a recent article The San Antonio Express News states, “Last month, when local residents were told to stay home in order to slow the spread of the coronavirus, emergency 911 calls for family violence increased 18 percent compared to the same time in 2019, officials said Tuesday.”  This means that victims are facing greater hardships than just combating potential illness. Lives are at risk and abusers are taking advantage of an already difficult situation.
To get a sense of the divide in North America you just have to visit Twitter for a short period of time where opinions are rampant even though they may be spurious and misinformed. Typically based on political, religious or ideological beliefs people engage in combat with each other but contribute nothing to the solution or system at large. Fingers of blame point in all directions, not recognizing that blame does little to alleviate a situation that is going to change our world permanently, in some ways not for the better.
At a time when we need to be physically apart, we need to come together ideologically. Work on the solution together. Find the common path beyond this crisis. There is greater strength in unity than in any one individual’s belief system.
If COVID19 can’t bring us together, nothing will. We’re sunk, and we deserve all we get.
Shelley (c) 8-Apr-2020
Shelley’s bio (in brief) – I dive into data for business and emotional intelligence, and because curiosity kills. Data is a storyteller. Measuring and analyzing data reveals the story and shifts decision-making.
Shelley has been a long time follower of my blog, and we’ve become friends.
I’m very proud indeed to present her writing to you, and her message of solidarity during this global crisis we are *all* facing.
Hope you are safe and stays that way.
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