Sunday, March 19, 2023

My 3 Year Pandemic Anniversary

My 3 year pandemic anniversary was actually a few days ago, but it took me longer than I expected to write this post. Today's date is of personal significance to me because it's the birthday of my late aunt who passed away when she was the same age that I am now. I wonder what she, as a science teacher with a lung condition, would think of the mess we're in now.

 Last year I was feeling more optimistic about things. This year, I feel a deep disgust. I'm so tired of seeing the same foolish decisions being made all the time.

I've had it with people refusing to wear masks indoors. Some won't even wear them in healthcare settings.

They've already made it optional to wear masks on public transportation, but I guess that's not enough for some people.

And now wanting to wear a mask is being stigmatized as some kind of abnormality. It reminds me of drapetomania or hysteria.

People like me get accused of "living in fear" but the truth is that I've been living in a constant stage of rage. I no longer trust other people to do the right thing when it comes to this pandemic. They'd rather pretend it's over and live in denial.

I am witnessing the consent to be infected being manufactured in real time by "experts" who were paid off by powerful business interests. Whether it turns out that COVID emerged in a wild animal or in a laboratory, why would anyone want to catch it? Especially now that we keep learning about all the damage it can do? I don't know what I have to say to persuade anybody anymore. Perhaps I should appeal to their vanity and warn them that COVID can make you lose your teeth and hair. Or maybe I should point out that it can also cause erectile dysfunction. But maybe that's still something you assume will only happen to other people. Or maybe the people you know who had it all said that it was not that bad.

Now it's gotten to the point where talking heads on TV talk about it in the past tense. How foolish to believe that we can somehow end the pandemic by declaring it over, as if it's Daylight Saving Time. The hubris of it all, to assume we have that kind of control over natural phenomena.

And how can anyone even make an informed decision about potential exposure without data about how many cases there are?

This is what "normal" at any cost looks like, complacency and resignation. Pretending that it's over, and wondering why everything still feels off somehow. We are supposed to accept the horror of catching COVID multiple times as something inevitable and possibly beneficial. Asking for stronger vaccines to be developed makes us ingrates. Asking other people to wear masks is asking too much. These expectations have left me feeling contempt, resentment, and a sense of refusal to comply. 

You want to look at me like I'm crazy for wearing a face shield? Well I'm only wearing it because you're not wearing a mask. You think I'm abnormal for wearing a mask? So what. I'm an artist, so I'm accustomed to being thought of as abnormal. I am disgusted with what our society has chosen to normalize. It shouldn't be this way.

And as I've written before, this "normal" we're all supposed to be rushing back to wasn't that wonderful anyway.


What gives anyone else the right to decide that I should get sick?




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