I recently wrote a satirical speech by our Prime Minister, in
which I imagined him coming up with all sorts of absurd rules for the Christmas
season. It was really hard. Not because I was unable to come up with hundreds
of such rules, were I minded to do so, but because the whole point of satire is
to raise the absurdities up a step or two, in order to highlight the
ridiculousness of what is happening. But how do you do this when the real-life absurdities
have already been turned up to 11 on the amplifier? I
kid you not when I tell you that my original list included a rule against
playing certain board games over Christmas — which I rejected — only to see a
few days later SAGE coming out and advising against the playing of board games.
We have now had nearly nine months of being treated like
utter imbeciles. A once great country with a once free
people has been reduced
to the level of being governed by pathetic, childish slogans. And
for some reason we have allowed ourselves to be infantilised.
I am utterly baffled as to how people can have sat through some
of these slogans being introduced without responding with howls of laughter.
Alert. Control the Virus. Save Lives.”
What on earth is this actually supposed to mean?
Stay Alert? For what? Are we supposed
to be on our guard for a virus that is approximately 120 nanometres, or around
1,000th the width of a human hair? Are we to carry an electron microscope
around with us wherever we go, just in case? One of my favourite signs is an
electronic one I sometimes see on my occasional drives into the office. On one
day, it says, “Stay Alert. Control the Virus.” On another, it says, “Stay
Alert. Watch out for Cyclists.” It should be noted that cyclists are
considerably bigger than 120nm and even often wearing the kind of hi-vis
jackets that coronaviruses refuse to wear.
Control the Virus? Say what? You
mean they actually think we’re stupid enough to think they’re clever enough to
devise schemes that can actually control those little invisible 120 nm virus
particles that are in the air and on surfaces. Apparently so.
Save Lives? I am yet to hear a
convincing argument as to how I and my family, not having any symptoms and thus
not being infected by the virus, can possibly stop the spread of said virus
that we don’t have by staying at home or wearing a piece of cloth over or
respiratory passages, such that we save lives.
More recently, it has been decided that the slogans were maybe a
bit too high-brow and needed to be simplified further, this time into
monosyllables: “Hands. Face. Space.” Although I
tend to avoid watching Comrade Johnson and Co as they spout this nonsense at
their regular stand-ups, on the occasions when I have had that misfortune, it
has felt eerily like suddenly being thrust into the world’s largest Kindergarten
with teacher talking down to his little charges as if they were really, really
I won’t sport with your intelligence by mentioning all the other
mind-numbing slogans we’ve been fed this year, suffice it to say that phrases
such as “social bubble” and “Covid-secure” would be deeply funny were it not
for the seriousness of the situation into which those coming up with such tripe
have placed us (as an aside, are such buildings for which it is claimed that
they are “Covid-secure” also “Flu-Secure” and “Cold-Secure”?)
But the infantilising of an entire population is by no means the
worst thing they have done to us. Worse by far has been the dehumanising of
millions of people, which has been done via a number of enormously destructive
Chief of them is the idea
that we must all avoid each other. I cannot even begin to
think how destructive this has become. In a normal society, if you or I have
symptoms of a particularly nasty seasonal respiratory illness, which is what
Covid-19 is, we would avoid one another. Obviously. But the idea of perfectly healthy
people avoiding other perfectly healthy people must qualify as one of the most
absurd concepts ever dreamt up. Not only is it self-evidently
unnecessary, it is bound to have long-terms consequences for the way we view
one another, the way we relate to one another, the way we behave around one
another. It turns us from seeing one another as humans, made in the Image of
God, to walking virus carriers and a potential risk. Some people now literally
behave as if they are navigating their way through a crowd of potential
terrorists, rather than simply walking through a group of fellow humans.
People avoidance is not just deeply destructive from a
psychological and social perspective, it is also deeply cruel. The
idea that a grandparent cannot have contact with their children or
grandchildren is just obscene. And the very thought of the elderly being left
to fester away in care homes, rather than being allowed contact with their
families is sick. Yet that’s what we’ve done, or allowed to be done.
And of course, I cannot leave off talking about dehumanisation
without mentioning masks. These wretched things were
introduced in the Summer, long after the
epidemic had waned, at a time when they could not possibly have done any good,
even if they had been capable of doing any good. Why were they introduced?
Partly to keep the fear-narrative going, even though there was extraordinarily
little risk of dying of a seasonal respiratory virus at that time of the year.
But even more important, they are a sign of submission. They
are a, “we can do with you what we like moment.” They are nothing to do with
health. They are a psychological mask, and even more than the social
distancing, they have served to alter the way we see one another and are seen
Millions of people humiliated by the Marketing Team of Covid-19
and their infantile slogans. Millions of people dehumanised by having their
faces, their smiles, their laughter, their thoughtfulness etc covered to make
them into expressionless drones. That was the year we just lived through. Will
2021 be the year a critical mass try to escape the Kindergarten and return to