As Crime Sinister Boris Johnson is set to reopen the country with zero restrictions on the 19th, a quick reminder that a vast chunk of England seem absolutely fine with walking gently into mass hospitalisations, long covid cases galore and, indeed, the needless deaths of our loved ones.
I don’t like the conservatives.
You might have picked up on this simply by standing near me for more than 10 minutes, watching my internet videos or reading this blog- or simply sensing that I possess a moral compass that I actively try to align to true north when I can.
I haven’t liked them for a very long time, and frankly it started out as a grumbling resentment that the party of “family values” so openly touted a distaste for me and people like me simply based on my sexuality which still persists to this day with the animated ancient mummy herself Baroness Nicholson leading the charge.
But over the years this grew from a distaste to a naked hatred- not necessarily of conservative voters though I do find conversation with right wing voters entertaining because the pretzels they can knot themselves in to escape the reality of voting for bigotry is truly impressive- like watching one of those people that can fold themselves up to fit in a box.
Am I saying that all bigots are right wing? No… having stepped further and further left I do sometimes worry that some of my fellow far left folk fall prey to a different type of bigotry, one that assumes that we’ve always been how we are- “sensitive souls”, those who care about the people around us enough to hear them out and try to accommodate them. The fact that the left sometimes continue to condemn people even when they apologise openly for their behaviour confounds me- though I often find it right to do so when the apology is contrite and focuses more on the feelings of the accused, rather than sorrow for the harm their actions caused.
Nevertheless I do feel an open dislike for conservative voters to be quite apt at the moment, as we’re watching England in particular careen towards what I and others like me see as an abject humanitarian disaster. Below is a graph that shows the figures in England on lockdown day 2020- vs the repeated fuckups of a government run by a shaven orangutang in an ill fitting suit, vs now.
I’ve listened with numb horror to every bit of news coming from Downing Street for several weeks, sure that it was more right wing pomp, the showmanship of a man convinced that if he acts rough and tough despite looking like a dishevelled fop, people will laud him as a tough, decisive leader when we know- from the literal mouth of his previous adviser and sundry leaks- that he is incapable of doing the job which the tories wangled him into.
But no. Here we are, heading into literal disaster, a worst case scenario so unutterably dire that I cannot process it- and still bay the tory voters, “we just need to get on with our lives”.
Were this not a matter of life and death for others and, who knows, maybe even myself – I’d sit back and watch as these people lose their grandmothers, wives, cousins- and suddenly realise that maybe charging naked into a bush fire isn’t quite the brave notion they think.
But I know many vulnerable people who will be paralysed with fear in their homes, unable to take vaccines, unable to visit shops during the day for fears of crowds of people so excited to return to normality that they’ll cheerfully sacrifice the over 1.5 million seriously disabled among us who, and I can’t believe I have to write this, also deserve to “return to normal”.
Of course I’m not foolish and I know that the internet is a vacuum and people will spout their nonsense there, only to toe the line when the chips are down – but the sheer number of people excited to reach “freedom day”, an odious term coined by the office of our lacklustre leader, feverish to ditch masks which are treated like the lead at the neck of a particularly ferocious dog, terrifies me.
Firstly, a word on oppression- the reactionaries’ current favourite term.
If your oppression consists of the act of wearing a bit of material on your face so you can walk into asda for some custard creams and a pint of milk, or being asked to not breathe directly down the neck of the people in front of you at the pub- what a privileged, easy life you must lead.
The types who feel this is oppression are so quick to compare it to Nazi Germany which proves beyond doubt they’ve never actually read history books or accounts of what exactly it was like to live in Nazi Germany. To think that we walk amongst people so cosseted that they believe that mask wearing, an act that protects others more than yourself, is oppression, would be laughable if it were a pastiche- so ridiculous that you wouldn’t believe it.
I remember seeing this meme about six months into the pandemic and even though it made me laugh, it also made me sigh and understand that this was the “normal folk” I was expected to walk around with. It simply said something to the effect of “any zombie movies after this will be really unrealistic if a huge portion of us don’t go running towards the zombies to prove how undeadly they are”.
That meme has become a mental symbol of how I’ve coped for so long- making comedy out of the growing insanity of the country to get by, because to look at people’s behaviours factually I think i’d have snapped in May 2020.
Heading to disaster
I wake up every day, a little bit amazed that we’re allowing the tories to just blow the doors off the pandemic because “if not now, when?”- we were told so many times we had an amazing vaccine rollout- surely it does it an injustice to open before it’s finished? But people don’t care. A worrying portion of people somehow function in their daily lives whilst equating vaccines to poison, population control, tracking and an exhaustive list of other fundamental nonsense.
I can never imagine what it’s like to be someone so insane as to think that almost every scientist, doctor, nurse, politician and more, in the whole world, sat down and said “so we’re going to pretend that this virus exists/ so we’re making an evil vaccine- don’t tell anyone though, we’re making a new world order for *insert laughable reason here*”.
All of that- the disinformation that’s been allowed to spread, unscrupulous characters trying to shill their idiocy to a nation all too willing to believe the one person who says no when 99,999 other people say yes, a government headed up by a man who, we now know without a doubt said “let the bodies pile high in their thousands!” rather than facilitate a lockdown out of a fear of his friends’ pockets getting lighter, has led us to this moment. As we stand on the precipice of what I confidently believe will be a disaster for the people of the UK, I think I’m more offended for the people failed by the education we were given by a state in disrepair who believe the nonsense than I am by the man so callous as to push for it.
There seems to be a worrying amount of credence to the notion that Matt Han-dsoffmywifeyou-cock was removed from his role by angry tory backbenchers who knew he was throwing rope at an intern he hired with public funds, who then facilitated the installation of Sajid Javid who would be their mouthpiece for the end of lockdowns. The reason? Isn’t it always money? Need you ask.
I don’t have the spoons today to go into the Brexit reasoning behind reopening, plus I think that brexit is only a factor, not THE factor in reopening. Plus saying Brexit three times usually gets you mobbed by angry people who are genetically incapable of speaking in cogent arguments.
And now for some pretension!
I feel like Cassandra. If you don’t know who Cassandra is, here’s a little history on Greek tragedies for you.
Cassandra was a woman gifted by fate to see the future- but cursed to never be believed when she told people what she saw.
I imagine if Cassandra were here now she’d be screaming at the top of the shard, begging people to stand up against a government who seems to be falling just short of eugenics, as people point and laugh and call her crazy. But we don’t need Cassandra to spell this out to us- we have doctors, scientists, immunologists, people whose roles are to study pandemics past and advise us on how to get through it, telling us en masse that this is a bad idea.
Of course there’s conflicting opinions- people saying it will work – but we live in a world where Nazis still exist so to speak for the mental acuity of individual, educated people who speak out in favour of the erasure of measures, is not exactly ground breaking, nor does it mean that they are the pied pipers we should be following.
My concern comes for the people of the UK who may – I hope I’m wrong, I don’t want to see abject suffering and mass deaths of course and woe betide the tories if I lose someone I love- be facing a nightmare from which the escape will be long, arduous and filled with the suffering of those we care for most.
I repeat, I hope things work out okay- but if things do go wrong, I hope Johnson and the scum who enabled the disaster to unfold are hoisted high from their own petards and castigated by the masses they’re so willing to throw to the wolves, all in the name of the post-Brexit economy.
I suppose my main question is as simple as this: how and why are so many people absolutely fine with the possibility of getting sick themselves, of their families getting sick, of losing friends, loved ones?
The usual answer seems to be that “we’ve sacrificed so much”- begs the question why we’re so keen to sacrifice more.