Unfortunately, my blog attracts more than it's fair share of raving lunatics and conspiracy theorists. It always has, for obvious reasons, but even after I had dropped the favourite topic, the weirdos, as I call them, have hung on.
Now they believe the coronavirus is a big hoax, a way in which to rush in draconian new laws that will infringe our personal liberties and lead us into a totalitarian Communist state. The 'our' in this case is the United States and the United Kingdom, two countries presently ruled by fat cat billionaires who don't even pretend to want equality, the, err, binary opposite of communism Whilst I agree we will probably lose many freedoms along the way, now is not the time to stir up rebellion, stopping the pandemic must take priority. They assume that the majority of us are stupid and brainwashed because we are taking government guidelines seriously. They mock that we applaud all the front line NHS workers, suggesting our next trick should be to roll over as if we were compliant dogs.
To be fair, I don't have any actual English blood in me, but as a child of the 60's I was raised to be proud of my British home. Proud that we alone stood up to Hitler, proud that our predecessors stood side by side with their neighbours and fellow countrymen to fight the enemy on the beaches and the landing grounds, in the streets, fields and hills. That's what we need right now. The will, and clever organising people, to get the world back on track.
They are this century's equivalent of Lord Haw Haw, not Germany calling, but predatory sharks looking for a financial killing on the deaths of society's most vulnerable. Both the sharks and the vultures are hovering. The Western world looked on the coronavirus as a challenging new way to make billions. Race you to the patents office, say the Kushners to the Trumps. And in the UK, herd immunity - what a great new way to reduce the benefits bill?
Comparing the statistics for coronavirus in China, the Far East and Russia, it would appear that the communist countries have contained the Covid-19 far more effectively than the capitalist countries. Meanwhile, Trump and all those minions propping him up, couldn't care less about the lives of American Citizens and here in the UK, our PM has just awoken from an up close and personal experience with the virus. Hopefully this awakening will force him to do the right thing.
History has shown us that major catastrophes bring about major changes, WWI for example had a huge impact on class divisions - the aristocracy were dying alongside the coalminers in the trenches. The aftermath of WWII saw the launch of the Welfare State and Homes for Heroes, a huge surge in care for the working classes.
At the moment we are in the middle of the pandemic and we don't know how bad it is going to get. We need the spirit of Wartime, another Churchill (Jeremy would have achieved that), that feeling of all pulling together to fight a common enemy. I despair of these malcontents and ingrates, who are so eaten up inside by whatever evil possesses them, that they will gripe and whine about those who are doing their best to help us. Wtf is wrong them? I cannot thank enough all those people who are ready to take care of us and those who are making sure we get food and medicines. The doctors, the nurses, the paramedics, the delivery drivers, the shelf stackers, they are the heroes this time round. If Churchill were alive, they would be the 'few'* we would be thanking.
These are miserable times and we are all scared, but what I find more scary is the way in which all our demeanours have changed. Everyone is tense and grumpy. Even I am supressing my inner urge to spread sweetness and light. I don't want to smile, I don't want to get into conversation, I'm suffocating from my black ninja mask because I tied knots in the ear elastic to shorten it, and now I can't get them out. If I go blue and keel over, it will probably be the mask.
I am now getting bored. I have watched The Tudors and Versailles hundreds of times over and have almost finished every episode of Project Runway. If I had a genie in a bottle I would ask him to take me back to age 15 and get me into couture. Having said that, I will now feel a bit of a phoney asking for 'No Regrets' in my funeral songs.
Much as I don't want to go to the dark side, it's hard not to think of your own mortality at this time. I've never feared death, because I, like William Blake, believe it is a door to another paradise, I also draw in a bit of Buddhism, because I believe if it was shit this time round, you come back as something better. I'm torn between wanting to be an Egyptian Queen or a pampered cat, the couture loving me, would pick Cleopatra, but look how that ended? Totally worth it for a night with Richard Burton (it was the voice!) btw, but a lifetime of tummy tickling and finest smoked salmon.....hmm. In any event, I am very much in the plus side with the karma, it is my nature to be kind, it's why I sleep well.
I suppose at a time like this it would be a good idea to have a proper God, a proper religion. Perhaps I should just sum it up by saying 'faith', faith in something, anything. I had a very unstable mother, so to be fair I have never really had faith in anything. But I kind of envy people who do have faith, they are able to switch all their cares and woes to an unseen entity that is more powerful than them. Sticking with power as the optimum word, I have never in my life been able to hand my power to anyone, certainly not to a mythological being that no-one has ever seen. My stubbornness, as I may have mentioned, led to a very unhappy time in the convent. To be honest, as a kid, having to attend church every fecking day, I would stare at the priests and nuns in all their medieval garb with gormless looks on their faces and their hands clasped. Did they really believe I would ask myself, or were they were putting it on like great big phonies? I always opted for the latter and the inevitable battering.
Now, I am more philosophical. I understand that people have different needs, for some they live more contented lives by belonging to a community or congregation. Some people like to hand over responsibility for their lives to a God or higher power, that is more bearable than taking responsibility for themselves. I once read, many years ago, that the two biggest evils in the world were capitalism and religion. I had not at that time gone into higher education, and thought it a bit harsh on religion. I was a lapsed Catholic, but Catholicism one of the two greatest evils? It puzzled me, I needed to know more. I want to compress all I learned into one or two sentences, suffice to say, my God's bigger than your God. Now the word 'herd' is politically correct, how about herd mentality?
But religion for many provides family values, community spirit, a sense of belonging, I can't knock it. We have gone 2000 plus years and still haven't replaced the life and family guidelines set out in the Old Testament, except now we sacrifice immigrants rather than goats and livestock. The biggest argument religious Christian zealots have is that we wouldn't know how to behave without the rules set down by their God. That is, we would all be killing, stealing, disrespecting our parents and coveting our neighbours wives/partners, if the good Lord hadn't told us not to. I can't say I have ever had inclination to murder, steal or covet, even without guidelines, and frankly find it a bit odd that people need to be told not to do that.
Now I have described myself as a lot of things. First of all a Roman Catholic (no choice), then atheist - be gone you god botherers, anti-theist - anti God worshippers, agnostic - hmm, there might be something.... back to RC, there is something very comforting in lighting a candle and accompanying it with a prayer. Besides, I've always thought of confessing all I can think of as I draw my last breath, just to hedge my bets.
But mostly, I am agnostic. That is I believe there is an afterlife of sorts. During life we have people with whom we have connected, our souls have entwined, we love them more life itself. And I think they are watching over us and I think we will meet again. I should hasten to add, I do not believe in spiritualists, mediums or any other con artist who sets out to deceive people. I think they are very cruel.
We don't need spiritualist and mediums, we can see our loved ones, in the faces of all their descendants, in one way or another. They may have the same facial features, gestures, crooked smiles, sparkly eyes, those lost, live on. Be it nature, or nurture, the genes are there and they carry on from generation to generation.
Well that ended up very deep, but I have annoying habit of speaking out loud when I really shouldn't. Regardless, my kindest wishes to all who still look in. I vowed to carry on writing even if I had only one reader left, and maybe now I should step up to the plate for those who have kindly hung on. Right now, I pray to all the Gods there may be (especially fond of the Greek ones) to take care of all us. Please, please, be kind and thoughtful, and if you can, give a smile to the person who crosses the street to avoid you. For the narcissistic sociopaths out there, it's not personal.
*Never has so much been owed by so many to so few.