The crisis caused by the spread and threat of COVID-19 has brought out the best and the worst among us.
We continue to see the selfless sacrifices made by frontliners who do their job notwithstanding the risks and difficulties. We also see how people donate their resources to those without the wherewithal to respond to their most basic needs during this time of economic pause. There are experts who devote their time and effort to finding solutions to the problem.
Bayanihan is all too real, and it takes on many forms. It is not because we are of any political persuasion, or religion; it is because of our common humanity.
But even as there are bright spots to see us through these difficult times, we are also much aware of the how some people can give in to their base nature.
There are politicians demanding preferential treatment, leaders lying and refusing to be upstaged by their more diligent counterparts, and others shamelessly using the situation to paint a rosy picture of themselves before the public.
There are those tasked with life and death decisions but who insist on taking their time and refusing to act with urgency.
There are numerous displays of nonsense and incompetence by those who are supposed to be in charge of the situation.
There are threats of violence against those whose only sin is to ask why their government is letting them fend for themselves when they cannot even earn a decent living.
Those in government do not have a monopoly of bad deeds. Some enrich themselves by taking advantage of the economic uncertainty. Others use technology to steal information and violate privacy.
Many spread false information.
These things are enough to drive many to a sense of desperation and helplessness. We stay in our homes for fear of contracting the virus, and it is tempting to feel as though we cannot do anything much to change the situation.
But we can keep close watch over what is happening and speak out against injustices being committed, or responsibilities not performed. We share a common fate, after all, and our failure to call out excesses and inadequacies will allow evils to persist, dooming not some of us, not many of us, but all of us.
It’s a long way still, but if we are constant and vigilant, we can emerge from this crisis better and stronger together.