We are well into our third closure in Israel but the numbers aren’t improving. More than a third of the population has received the first shot of the Pfizer vaccine, and more than an eighth has received the second one, and the plague is spreading as if nothing happened. Prof. Ran Blitzer, head of the Corona Cabinet at Magen Israel, the national program for fighting the coronavirus, is baffled.
According to Blitzer, “By all expectations and models, we should have been in a different place … We should have seen a greater decline in the number of confirmed cases than we are seeing. We also should have begun to see a decline in the number of difficult cases, but we are not seeing this trend as much as we expected.”
In line with Prof. Blitzer’s dismay, the national mood is dreary and gray. It seems as though every time we zig, Covid zags right back.
Every time we think we’ve found a way out of the plague, it finds new ways to return. And every time it returns, it returns more forcefully. In the first closure, only a fraction of the patients were children under 18. In the third closure, more than 35th percent of the active patients are children. Worse yet, we’re still not certain that the vaccines work for all the new strains that have popped up recently from the UK, South Africa, California, Brazil, and who knows what other strains are in store.
The coronavirus is exposing our weaknesses one by one. It is mocking our efforts to retrain it, and shows how easy it is for nature to fool our high-tech medicine that consumes so much of our resources. Every time we refuse to see the truth, the virus shows it to us slightly more convincingly, but people pay for it with their lives. When the plague broke out, doctors assured us that it doesn’t affect children. I said back then that it will affect children, that it will damage not just our lungs, but also our brains, and all because of our insistence not to see that there is no cure for the virus on the level where it manifests, but only at its source—in our abuse of one another and of nature. Now, some children are already in critical condition in Israel, assisted by ventilators, while other children, though still not in Israel, are suffering from Kawasaki syndrome like side effects, which destroys their brains.
Under these circumstances, I must reiterate that the only way to deal with Covid is through healing our social relations, because we will never destroy the virus. It is our poor social relations that drive us to compete and seek each other’s destruction, and it is that drive that makes every means acceptable. In our struggle to annihilate each other, we are annihilating innocent people, innocent animals, innocent plants, and the ground we walk on.
There is nothing wrong with our planet; it could sustain all the beings living on it, and much more than that, if only we did not seek to outdo, humiliate, and exploit other people, classes, nations, faiths, and races. In short, our hatred of each other is destroying our planet, destroying our health, and will ultimately destroy us.
If we want to defeat Covid, we must defeat the hatred we feel toward each other. Only if we do that will we start living a more balanced life, allow nature to restore its own balance, and the countless pathogens that have migrated from wild animals to humans will return where they belong. We will not restore Earth’s balance until we stop ruining it, and we will not stop ruining it until we stop ruining each other. This is the chain of corrections that must take place if we want to have a normal life, and nothing we can do will change it. I hope it does not take long before we listen to reality because the blows ahead are clearly growing worse, and we have had enough unnecessary agony.
[A teenager receives a vaccination against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Tel Aviv, Israel, January 24, 2021. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun]