Post 61: #Coronavirus and a global perspective.

Tonight is the night to rant.

We’re sharing our experiences, thoughts, and uncensored opinions during lockdown, quarantine, and self-isolation. For some of us, it’s DAY 61. 

Too many choices

RafifJ, #Malaga, #Spain

There are so many things I could rant about.

I bet you’re thinking I will launch into a tirade about #Syria, where for NINE YEARS the Assad regime has maintained its grip on power by systematically and deliberately destroying the country and committing some of the worst atrocities in modern history. And the world just watches. But no, I can’t go there just now because there aren’t enough words to adequately express my rage at the utter lack of justice.

Retrieved from Art for a Change.
No copyright infringement intended.

OK, you might think I’ll go nuts over my realization that the American Dream is little more than a fantasy that plays out quite nicely for the super-rich White crowd. We’ve been spoon-fed a fairy tale about equal opportunity and the rule of law, but People of Color – any color but white – know better. As America heads down this slippery slope, and fast, I think I see authoritarianism peeking from around the corner. So no, I won’t go there just yet, because I already know that dictators and their puppet regimes will kill anyone and anything that gets in their way. And the rest of the world will watch.

I could rant about global greed and corruption, but it’s become a too-sad, too-often repeated refrain. How about the 800 MILLION or so people in the world who suffer from hunger? Child trafficking? Institutionalized slavery? Animal cruelty? Pick an issue, and you’ll find injustice. And the world watches.

Now that I’ve used up my allotted space, which rant should I choose?

Normal and civilized?

Wayne Wallace, McLean, #Virginia

I’m not sure when it started or why, but I’ve made a bit of a transition in life. Or at least my outlook and attitudes have changed.

It wasn’t all that long ago that my sympathies were far more aligned with John Galt than John Lewis. I don’t think most would describe me as heartless (though some certainly have), but I will admit my focus has been more inward.

That has changed, in part because of my own brief but very real flirtation with death; in part because of losses in my life (my father most of all). But also, I think my attitude has shifted so dramatically because of what I see going on in the world around me. For instance, I’ve watched the Syrian disaster from a closer seat than most casual observers. The way the Assad regime treated its people was an anomaly, I believe, and not how “normal” and “civilized” people treat each other. But I was wrong.

While what’s going on in the US is not barrel bombs, starvation, and genocide, it is abuse of power by the elite to maintain their status at the expense their subjects’ lives and livelihood. Two examples fuel my rant:

First, #TheRealDonaldTrump bought 6 weeks of Coronavirus protection by partially blocking travel. Then he squandered that protection by neglecting to act, or, more importantly, by failing to alert the public and the governors who would need to take the lead in responding.

Why? Because news of a pending pandemic might spook the markets and hurt his reelection campaign. To be clear, the president of the United States was willing to kill tens of thousands of Americans to ensure his reelection. Normal? Civilized? Well, Bashar Al-Assad must be pleased to have a kindred spirit in the White House.

Second, millions of Americans were infected, and tens of millions of us stayed home to save the country from the pandemic. In a rare case of bipartisanship that actually addressed Americans’ needs, Congress passed the CARES Act. It provided unprecedented relief to workers and small business owners who were sacrificing all for the common good. What actually happened? Banks lent money – not to the small businesses most impacted by the Coronavirus – but to large multinational corporations. The American people watched impotently as Harvard University and Barron Trump’s elite prep school received small business loans that don’t have to be paid back (grants).

Is this a “normal” or “civilized” country? For me, it is not.

Rant I shan’t

RJD, #Beirut, #Lebanon

I feel all I have done in the past few months, is rant. So I decided today I will not rant about the Idiot-in-Chief, nor the Lebanese government, the lollar, the Covidiots, the social irresponsibility, racism, the selfishness and greed, pollution, the Bisri Dam, inequality, women’s rights (specially the Kafala system). I shan’t.

The reason is simply because, as we say here in Lebanon, “leysh we2feh 3aleyeh” (is it all hinging on my actions – as in my actions will not make a change, so what?)

Yes, I am resigning from yelling about the big to the small issues. I am finally  adopting the Lebanese attitude.

I am resigning because I live in a country and a world that will just not stop being corrupt. I am resigning because I will not be part of the big corporate reign on the world.

Retrieved from
No copyright infringement intended.

I am resigning from trying to educate the many idiots who feel it’s their natural right to litter the street. I am resigning from explaining to the ignorants about why we need to save Mother Earth.

I am resigning from analyzing the cobwebs of news and their implications on our lives.

Most importantly, I am resigning my civic duties as a Lebanese and world citizen.

It is with great regret that we have allowed ourselves to be led like sheeple and still bow to Big Brother and think he is actually a bro. I cannot allow myself to be one of those sheeple, I never was, and I shall never be. To that end, I thank #Covid-19 for locking me up at home with a device on which I can write out my thoughts. Fortunately, the device doesn’t disagree!

But rant, I shan’t!

Limbo land

Tina F., Fairfax, #Virginia

I have never belonged to any group/organization like a sorority or anything else. I believe that I have a mind of my own. I am a balanced person, able to see both sides of a situation and remain on neutral ground. Actually, after re-reading the last sentence I wrote, I must admit it is not really true anymore. These days I am a flip-flopper. Maybe I’m just a doubter. Wait, maybe I’m a believer…

These days I have time to read the news and pontificate on our world and our future. I make judgements on our leadership. I decide to laugh at some tweets. I cry at other sad reports. But one thing is for sure, I am fed up of the double-sided views.

The US has devolved into the recurring rhetoric of doubters vs optimists. Of the strong vs the weak and a test of good vs evil. No wonder everyone is confused. The news you get also depends on which papers you read. Is it real news or fake news? Is it fact or conspiracy?

Don’t pay attention to the news, some say. Just turn it off and listen to music. But I can’t. I’m obsessed with trying to make a judgment. Sometimes I try to pretend that there isn’t a pandemic and just read the tweets for a humorous pastime. But it’s not long before I’m jolted into reality.

Retrieved from
No copyright infringement intended.

This has become the new me. Sometimes I’m the grey-haired photographer, a radical, a pacifist who does not believe anyone. No, the truth is nonexistent. Other times, I’m a conservative and a denier. Maybe I’m a rebel. Or is my current condition just limbo land?

Don’t worry, I will not crawl into a dark hole and live off the grid (although I want to). No, I need my friends and family to exist, so I’ll just sit here and wait for the current brawl to end so I can get back to …..

I can’t even remember what I used to do before….

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