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Ah! The virus called the influencers. While people are trying to save lives with their reach, certain others are ‘tired’ of seeing all the calls for help. Lost our basic humanity, have we?
The virus is at its peak right now in India. People are running helter-skelter to find resources for their families. Others are doing whatever they can to help them. Hospitals are overcrowded and understaffed. Cremation grounds are at around 200 percent of their capacity. Everyone is scared and people don’t really know what to do. Social media is filled with people requesting and providing resources when and how they can. Influencers are using their reach to get as many verified resources as possible. And in such times, appear some influencers who are ‘tired’ of the virus. Ones who are ‘dying’ to breathe fresh air and go out!
I am very sure all of you have seen pictures and videos of people vacationing in the hills or the beaches. The Maldives, Goa, and Shimla are current favourites to travel to and spread the virus at! (Don’t hate on me – you know it’s the truth!) It honestly, gets to me. All this, seeing their pictures and videos annoys me and infuriates me! No, I am not envious of them, I am just angry because their entitlement is the absolute worst!
Let me tell you very clearly and honestly why these things bother me so so much. If I ‘accidentally’ piss you off, take a look at your privilege and then come talk to me, okay?
So like I said, everyone’s timelines on social media are filled with people asking for help for their family, relatives, or friends who are suffering from COVID. They are running here and there trying to get oxygen/plasma and whatever else they can for their family!
Meanwhile, there are others who are traveling and roaming around being the ‘wander-lusters’ they claim to be. Well, honestly, none of my social media profiles say that I am a ‘travel freak,’ ‘wander-luster,’ so I am not entirely sure how this wander-luster behaviour works. But one thing I do know for sure that while these ‘influencers’ are ‘dying’ to breathe the fresh mountain air or the sea breeze, there are real people who are literally dying to have a breath of oxygen. There are people whose oxygen levels have dropped to the mid-30s!
I really do not understand this need to travel and party during such conditions! Yes, the lockdown has been unexpected. It has caused a lot of mental health issues. I am not denying the negative effects of the lockdown. But tell me, are these honestly higher than the cost of someone’s life? Is your need to travel more important than staying at home and trying not to spread the virus? Just how entitled are you?
My mom is a pathologist and works at three labs currently, trying to do whatever she can to help. Every day, She goes to a lab where they see at least 300-350 COVID and regular samples a day. As if this isn’t enough, she easily gets more than 10 calls a day asking her if she can help someone or the other in some way. Whether it is to see if she can help find an O2 bed or if she can help find the drugs or simply if she can talk to a doctor for someone’s relative. And the kind of woman that she is, she never says no. She goes out of her way to help people in need even if it drains the living energy out of her. Now if my mum says something like, ‘I need a break!’ everyone will bloody pounce on her! She’s a doctor, she’s supposed to do it. Does the Hippocratic oath mean nothing?
My dad, on the other hand, gets a whole different set of calls where he has to help people find either oxygen or beds or sometimes even spaces in the crematoriums. Can you imagine how tough it must be to get such calls?
With these examples, I am in no way, trying to glorify what they’re both doing. They are both simple humans doing their little bit to help despite having suffered heavy personal losses. These two power through it all.
I am very sure everyone knows someone like them – doing their bit to help. And at such times, when you see an Instagram post asking you to ‘please stop posting only about COVID’ because it makes them so sad, you are almost blinded by the rage you feel. At least I was!
I get it – the lockdown has been hard. Dealing with the virus has been terrible. But you know what’s even worse? Well, it’s seeing my dad lose one of his closest friends to the virus. It’s seeing my mum help make hospitalisation arrangements on almost a daily basis. And it is also calling resource upon resource to see if they have one tank of oxygen, one dose of the drug, one bed available! What’s tough is being worried about not just my grandmother but my best friend’s grandmother too! It is watching the death tolls rise each day. And worst of all, it’s tough to see your pictures of you enjoying your bloody vacations at the cost of someone else’s life!
Yes, inter and intra-state travel needs a negative test report. But did you know these reports are being forged? That people will stoop to great limits only to go on that vacation?
You may be asymptomatic and test positive. Or you may show all symptoms and test negative. Either way, you’re a carrier and by traveling in a flight, you are risking the lives of at least a hundred other people! I know it’s tough to be on your own, especially when the pandemic is raging outside and you’re showing symptoms, but check your privilege once before you make the decision to risk the lives of hundreds of people when you decide to go home! Do you know there are a ton of people who have endured the virus all on their own? That there are people who are literally ACTUALLY dying in hospitals away from home because they didn’t want to risk someone else’s life?
Well, I, honestly, don’t have too many words left now. I know no matter what any one of us says, the entitled idiots will be entitled idiots who will get away with it all. But the moment, the virus hits them, these will be the same people who will claim that they need the drugs and o2 ASAP! Because their lives are always more precious than ours, aren’t they?
Author’s Note: I am in no way, saying that all influencers are doing this. This is only for a select bunch of them who are traveling without a care in the world. At the same time, I am not trying to glorify what my parents are doing. Those were just examples of things I see on a day-to-day basis.
Image source: a still from the short film Selfie from Hell
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