There won’t be parades around downtown Naga this September. That is clear. That is certain. Definitely, we won’t be expecting any sudden announcement that abruptly, policies would change and drum and lyre corps and students clad in military gala would be marching down Panganiban. No, in all cast-iron certainty, that won’t happen. We’re all on the same page on that.
Along with that certainty comes some implications with the same level of certainty. Since there definitely won’t be any processions, traffic doesn’t need to be rerouted; roads need not be blocked. Spectators do not have to wait on the sidewalks for bands and companies which would not pass anyway. Vendors don’t need to set up makeshift stores along the road to sell foodstuffs or whatever; because the usual clientele would not be present. There would be no need for these because it would be simply ridiculous to do any of these. Logic…. Common sense demands it.
In the same way, classroom seats logically do not have to be assigned with pupils’ names because they won’t be sat on; soap bars, toothbrushes and sanitary napkins won’t have to be prepared since supposedly no pupil would be physically present; library nooks need not to be set up because they would not be accessed in modular or online classes; bulletin boards need not be posted since they would not have any audience, along with others in a similar line. (Furthermore, bulletin boards or any other physical announcement boards should be discouraged since these would promote curious and forgetful people to stay and read and possibly converge and create a mini-mass gathering; compromising physical distance.) Physical environment need not be prepared for physical reporting not only because no less than the President of the Republic has decreed “no face to face”, but even locally, Covid-19 cases have continued to surge here, there and everywhere that it is increasingly difficult to evade its strike; that to contemplate the act of physically gathering children would not promote their development but plummet them to detriment.
Yes, they’re actually doing these with the classrooms.
Another face of this phenomenon is the campaign in Metro Manila to decrease the physical distance among public utility vehicle passengers up to 0.3 meters. You might as well throw physical distance and health protocols out the window. Just check the logic. As national number of cases are shooting up past quarter of a million, and the Philippines seems to be promising to soon enter the world’s top 20, authorities are inversely cutting down on the meters of the distance between commuters. In a storm, I suppose, as the flood rises, the higher you would want to pull your feet up. As the waters rise even higher, the higher up the storeys the residents would climb up. But in this situation, as the rains rage on and the floods flow up, the lower the leaders would want to go. Ridiculously, as they plan to do this, they hope not to get wet. Isn’t that interesting? President Duterte really had to be present in their meeting; and they still could not sort it out whether to allow passengers to almost sit side by side, with the virus still violently vanquishing the nation. Is this issue too hard to resolve?
Then going back to the local landscape, another form of facing the fever exists in the other extreme. This is in the guise of pursuit of stricter solutions, and an innovation of location of the web of infection. Are you not questioning why the security guard is not asking for some card when there was so much hype that no one could enter business establishments without it? Because an institution needs consultation to warrant cooperation. Now this captain calls for ambitious adventures forward without conferring with his associates on his disposition and direction. The problem is his determination has a high probability of breaking the backs of his brethren, worse than they already are. Maybe a compromise could be contracted among the parties; and this could be arrived at with a simple conversation.
Why do we wonder why the wave would not wane? The government seems to be an institution with a scattered vision. It moves like a vessel with the captain calling towards one direction; and the oarsmen row in their own different desired directions. Then the navigators determined the direction and speed of the wind, as well as those of the currents, then brilliantly recommend to sail and row against them. Some mates push for one course with an expectation of collaboration without orientation. How then do we honestly anticipate to steer through the storm when vision and courses of action are not in coordination?
“Do two walk together, unless they have agreed to meet?”