Lockdown Day 12: 05/04/20 Politics

 

There has been conflicting reports about how to handle Covid 19 from both politicians and Medical advisors. Looking at it in a simplistic way, the two main viewpoints are poles apart. On the one hand lock downs and social distancing is the way forward from a governmental perspective, hoping to prevent the spread of the virus, to slow it down and make it manageable while they wait for testing and an eventual cure, and to reduce the numbers that need hospitalisation.

From our perspective the lock down is hard and already many are finding it intolerable. It is so different from the freedom we are used to. Social unrest is bound to get worse as time passes and all sorts of problems may arise from it when people get to the point where they’ve had enough and leave their homes. I guess this weekend with the rise in temperature and sunshine will give us an idea of how many will venture out against the instructions imposed upon us.

On the other hand, I’ve read various reports from medical advisors who believe that ending the lockdown is important. Letting the virus run its course through the entire population. The strong will survive with those survivors becoming immune to it. The weak of course will not and many will succumb, most notably the elderly. There is the added bonus that future generations will be naturally immune to the virus.

Neither tactic is particularly pleasant, and I am distancing myself from tackling the moral standpoints associated with both tactics. It’s complex, emotionally charged and ethically challenging. One thing is for sure, we can only follow one way or the other.

Wherever you are stay safe

Lockdown Day 11: 03/04/11 Policing

A lot has been said, for and against policing the lockdown. Firstly, I want to start by saying what a thankless task it is for the constabulary’s around the country. Yes, the government has stipulated what we can do and can’t do as far as leaving our homes but the ambiguity in the wording is bound to cause a few problems. So much is left for the police to interpret that it seems mistakes are going to happen. It’s been left to them to decide whether or not they deem a reason given to them for somebody being outside is valid under the ruling and fine the person if they don’t.

The police don’t stand to make many friends this way, and this at a time when they need our support, just as much as the nurses. Let’s not forget that they are still out there doing it, sorting out problems for people that involves putting themselves at risk. It’s no easy task and dealing with individuals that shouldn’t be out there doesn’t make it any easier for them.

I’ve witnessed police stopping individuals in their cars to check why they are out, and also stop and check walkers for the same reasons. They are doing what they’ve been instructed to do so please don’t give them a hard time. We should be saying thank you to them in the same manner that we’ve been thanking the NHS and by the same token, everybody else who still has to run the daily risk of leaving home for work.

Wherever you are, stay safe

Lock Down Day 9: 01/4/20 Coping

I’ve been asked several times recently how I’m coping with the lockdown. I’m going to be honest and state that it hasn’t been easy. For one thing living on the road, as I currently do, has afforded me a freedom unlike anything I’ve experienced before. Normally, I travel from school to school on a daily basis, so I’m accustomed to constant movement and it’s been really hard to remain in one place.

When I’m not in school I try to be outdoors as much as I can and after the hopping run etc then I like to find beautiful spots out in the countryside to write and edit. I never seem to relax more than when I do that. It can be a little lonely at the weekends, but I’m disciplined to the work I do and the work, and the places I visit, can offset the worst of being alone.

As far as family is concerned, of course I miss them, my children and my two grandchildren the most. Yes, we can do a lot by phone and face time etc but it’s not the same as actually being with them. Their proximity brings a comfort and closeness that no electronic gadget can replace. The touch of affection, a kiss, a hug cannot be dismissed as meaningless.

As a parent, a son and a grandfather I feel the responsibility to nurture, to keep an eye on my family and it’s the lack of being able to do that physically that causes me the most difficulty in coming to terms with. I would be home now, back from my travels for the Easter break. Everything I am used to tells me that this is the time I should be spending with my loved ones and everything else tells me I should be staying away. I will obey the rules, but I don’t ever think I will fully come to terms with this. I can only hope my family realise how much they mean to me by my absence.

Wherever you are stay safe.

Lock Down Day 10: 2/4/20 The Harsh Reality

Those of us who read all the updates on the progress of the virus could easily interpret results incorrectly. The death rate fell for a couple of consecutive days and while the news brought fresh signs of hope that the social distancing was starting to work, it clearly was the wrong belief with a massive jump following. It follows that the amount of people getting sick is an inconsistent amount every day and therefore those who succumb to it will also be inconsistent. In the harsh reality of the virus’s spread in a body will vary in patients, some take longer to die than others. I believe the will be peaks and troughs in the death toll. One of the medical doctors summed it up when he said we have to look at the data over a period of time rather than day by day.

The death toll is still rising, and it would be unreasonable to expect the government to relax the lock down rules. We will be confined to our homes for a lot longer yet. When I listen to the daily reports from both politicians and medical experts dancing around the issues I just wish they would come out and tell it straight. The British people can take the truth, would respond to the truth, by taking the necessary action, and the government would become far more credible for doing it.

There is a long way to go in fighting this epidemic and recently I found it very interesting listening to the way Sweden have approached this. While I don’t agree with their tactics, regarding lockdowns, what I did find enlightening was that the Swedish people trust their government, they believe their politicians tell them the truth and they respond by following the advice they’re given. I’m advocating only half of this, that our government give us the chance to believe them while we remain in lockdown

Wherever you are stay safe

Lock Down Day 8: 31/3/20 Health of the World

Some of us who haven’t been out could be excused for not noticing that spring is in the air. The recent run of weather with the northerly air flow has cleansed the air enabling us to see further. As I strolled along the Lees, France was in full view and the detail was incredible. The sun was shining, shimmering on the sea and the wind had abated. It was a beautiful day and a pleasure to walk for the half hour I allowed myself. There was more though, the silence and the calm made it a spring day unlike any other I’ve experienced. Perhaps in all the mayhem, disruption, fear and uncertainty there is hope.

Perhaps this is natures response to the abuse we, as a species, have imposed upon the earth during the last millennium, natures way of telling us to stop messing around and finally take responsibility to protect the world we live in properly. Clearly, nature is far more powerful than us and we should listen and act; when the virus abates, and I’m sure it will, then we have to make ourselves accountable for the world we live in. The state of the world is what we bequeath our children and grandchildren.

I know this sounds like I’m on my soap box here, but I’ve spent the last three years touring our country. I’ve seen the beauty of our land and it’s creatures like never have before and it’s so worth saving and protecting. We are no longer under the control of Europe and it’s time we started to lead by example instead of following the moves of others. Make a commitment to change but make that change relevant, meaningful and for the future.

Wherever you are stay safe.

C.S. Clifford

Author writing for all ages
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