Journaling the Coronavirus (COVID19) Pandemic,
May 11, 2020
A primer for how not to enlist the support of the general public in responding to the effects (real and imagined) of the virus. Upon arriving in Hawaii visitors are quarantined for 14 days in hotel rooms with only medical emergencies allowing for any departure from the rooms. Hotel employees report anyone who leaves for any reason, the police come, and many arrests have followed. The punishment, under this new ’emergency’ law, is 5,000 dollars and one year in jail.
Hawaii has managed to reduce its visitors down to 5000 for the last two months from a normal 1,800,000. The hotels are all but empty. Stores and shops are closed. On top of all that, vacation rentals are no longer allowed and the airline industry is flying 95% less than it did prior to March of 2020. The attitude of the authorities out in the Hawaiian Islands is one of aggressive attack, and their attack is fully directed at the very people, tourists, who have built the Islands into the ‘paradise’ it is, or was today.
The problem not considered is what I have been writing about as an anthropologist for some time. Changes to the social order are unpredictable and can be stunning in a murderous effect. Slavery of human beings killed many many millions over the years. It was a social affectation, a social decision about how skin color was linked to ‘functionality,’ a word used to imply that non-white races were lesser than human. The social conclusions that created slavery remain with us today and the effects will never leave us. Will people go back to Hawaii when the virus is deemed to have diminished if that is ever allowed to happen? Will people go back in time to save Hawaii? Without tourists, the islands will fall ever so slowly into a bankruptcy of economics, a decimation of its culture, and also make it fair game for wealthy billionaires to get together and take it over.
Being a state is no real protection anymore, like the constitution. The constitution is basically suspended all across America, and that was done without complaint and with complete trust, in leaders, almost everyone living in the USA knows are not worthy of the trust it takes to by a used car from one of those weird hair-do types salespeople. It’s now even money on whether Hawaii will ever be back, and those 50/50 odds are not improving much at all like this, the strangest and wildest political action in history, continues.
On a lighter note.
If you want to read about another side of Hawaii
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Very thoughtful, what is happening what could happen should all this result in a change of and in the social order. Terrible things can happen.
My blind spot for the moment is optimism meaning I’m opting for a positive outcome returning US – the rest of the planet I don’t know – to normal not an old or new normal, just normal.
Of course some things will change and my optimistic blind spot sees innovation, adjustments and adaptations that improve – at least continue to sustain – life here.