Coronavirus in the UK : Keep Calm and Carry On Ignoring the Government

The other day I was speaking to someone who compared the UK’s refusal to abide by the rules of the Coronavirus pandemic in the UK to a naughty child in class. You know the one that won’t listen to the teacher and subsequently gets everyone held in at break time?

A pretty accurate comparison if you ask me. But my gosh, how embarrassing. Who knew staying at home and washing your hands could be so hard?

It’s thought by many that the Covid-19 case is as serious a global pandemic as the war. It’s also thought by many that this pandemic will cause a certain shift in the function of the world, even after it’s recovery. These beliefs alone are enough to shock you into action (one would hope anyway ey).

Granted, most people are now listening. But some still are not.

Coronavirus in the UK

Thus far, the UK in its entirety has received high-level emergency lockdown advice in order to reduce the spread of coronavirus cases. These come from the government and health officials as well as celebrities and many other influential bodies following suit; amplifying self-isolation, restricted reasons for leaving the house and social distancing.

We can’t help but pull our hair out wondering why the UK isn’t getting the message. Could it be because something as serious and life-altering as the coronavirus outbreak has never been experienced by this generation and the last?

Because we have gotten so comfortable with abiding by our own lifestyle rules? Because the people of this country are simply too ignorant to take notice and action for their local and wider community?

When the coronavirus first became a national emergency in China, the country swiftly went into lockdown. Likewise, places such as Ireland, Italy, Belgium, France, Spain and India brought in enforced measures to help reduce cases. Some strategies described as “brutal but effective”.

The people of these countries listened and followed what they were advised to do almost immediately. Acknowledging that whilst the virus may not be life-threatening for them personally, ignoring the measures advised by their government could be fatal to other members of the community.

So what does this say about the UK public and their value for the community; as we watch them still having picnics in the park? Still holding large gatherings? Still panic buying?

There’s something incredibly cringe-worthy about the term “panic buying”.

I think this is because, to me, it connotes pretty much every personality trait I can’t bear: selfish, narrow-minded, ignorant and entitled to name a few. Unfortunately, this panic-stricken reaction has proven to adopt a drastic case of the domino effect (I still don’t understand the toilet roll thing).

For some, it’s impulsive to respond to serious issues with humor. Hence why social media is constantly churning out content that makes jokes in relation to the virus and its consequential measures. From my personal experience, the ratio of serious to humorous coronavirus content across social media is pretty even (if not slightly leaning further towards humor as the majority).

Coronavirus in the uk
Photo by Brian Macgowan

Now I’m no Debbie Downer and a regular advocate for a snort-worthy meme. And similar people are likely to argue that diffusing the tension is necessary for the current circumstances; by reducing the negativity of the situation and “lightening the mood” for the good of the people. But when you really think about it… is lightening the mood, in this way, what we need when people aren’t listening to what needs to be done?

On the serious side, content has been circulating online displaying the elderly struggling to gather basic groceries, the sick unable to obtain the medicine they need. One particular video of a critical care nurse brought to tears after being faced with empty shelves following a 48-hour shift made me feel particularly ashamed.

Of course, it’s upsetting to see. But this is essentially the content we need to share more of on social if unprompted good-will alone won’t spark change in people’s actions. Coronavirus in the UK and the rest of the world is a pandemic that needs to be taken seriously.

If the severity hasn’t been made clear enough already through rising death rates and people under the age of 30 (with no underlying health conditions) contracting the virus and dying, it really makes you wonder how the minds of some people work.

The truth that the people of the UK need to grasp is that the “every man for themselves” and “It won’t happen to me” attitude is what will lead us to fall. The sooner we accept what needs to be done on a united front, the sooner this will end. Recovery starts with unity.

By Charlotte M

A big thank you to our first guest writer Charlotte!

If you would like to read a more positive outlook on Coronavirus in the UK then check the article below!

Click here to read another article about the positive side of the Coronavirus

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