Many people are protesting the restrictions we live under, with the COVID 19 pandemic. I work with the public, and recently a woman talked back to me and protested me. I am trained to wear a mask and use disinfectants; we have safety procedures, and I think they are good. I think we are all safer with the procedures and disinfectants, and I can still do my work.
One woman protested that face masks cause distress for the client I was talking to. The woman took out her phone and found a government web site with information for people who have problems with masks.
If you are wondering, I didn’t look to verify the information. The place was isolated and there were no known cases of COVID 19 for many miles. I carefully disinfected myself and made sure my mask was in position, and I finished my work, and I cleaned myself carefully after. The risk was small, and those people made their own decisions about their safety.
I did not want to be a front-line soldier in our cultural war, the Virus Wars. The bickering and accusations could have continued for weeks, if I had argued.
You may have noticed the growing protests against the COVID 19 restrictions:
We should all be prepared for more of this.
For full disclosure, I have a personal opinion about what is happening. For me, the problem is medical, and the arguments are political. I used to work in a college as a course developer, officially an “Instructional Designer.” That’s a big name for a job in administration.
We always started a project with someone’s inspired idea, and we gathered information, and made changes as the concept grew. We pilot tested our work, and it was reviewed many times. After the course went live with students, we had regular reviews, and we made changes, as needed. I used to say, ‘it’s never set in concrete.’
Apparently, the COVID 19 responses were set in concrete, at the early stages, when we didn’t know much. The decisions were political, and leaders might be criticized if they modify their approach and make changes, as our understanding grows.
This is bad project management.
The result is polarization. Two sides form, and they both believe the others are completely wrong, and have nothing to teach them. In the video, the professor said we should not be surprised when people protest. She seemed to be saying, when people become angry and wrong, and then they protest. She did not say that we might learn something from the other side. We just shouldn’t be surprised when our neighbors do these wrong things.
The experts never mention that we might learn something useful from the other side.
That is bad religion.
“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32 )
“All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation.” (2 Corinthians 5:18)
That is clear. Christians are called to reconcile people to God, and then to each other.
We are moving into a cultural war, where ‘I am so right and they are so wrong, that I don’t need to listen.’ That attitude is dangerous, and it will continue long after the virus is gone. We can’t stop what we start.
God has a better way:
There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers. (Proverbs 6: 16 to 19)