The number of worldwide COVID-19 cases has now surpassed 1 million with over 53,000 deaths. Over half the world’s population is currently quarantined with businesses and individuals having to adapt their strategies and lifestyles in order to cope. The only stable factor of this crisis is the grit and determination of the often forgotten many. Healthcare workers, Binmen, Firemen, Police, Lorry drivers, Postmen, critical infrastructure workers and anybody else that keeps this country running from the bottom up all deserve our respect.
The letter you received today was sorted by a minimum wage worker in the middle of the night, The milk you had in your coffee this morning came from farmers in rural England working all hours and the news you read came from journalists working tirelessly to keep you informed. We really need to appreciate and be aware of the people that do these jobs, as it might make us think twice about taking these services for granted. It really is disturbing that some individuals feel the need to spit on healthcare workers and hoard vital medical supplies, what kind of society would we live in if everybody acted only in their own interest with no regard for others.
I also hope that after this pandemic people continue to recognise these key workers and do not continue to worship celebrities and ‘influencers’; most of whom only care for themselves and their image. Many celebrities have been showing their support for the NHS on social media, which is not necessarily a bad thing if it truly garners more public attention and appreciation, but if you delve into the real motive it more likely comes down to self-gratification - there is no need to publicly post such displays of appreciation. Sharing responses in this way, like the many other ‘celebrity’ causes spotted on social media, works to affirm the warped societal values that their work is worth more than those they are appreciating. Let’s take the latest Instagram from the Beckhams clapping the NHS as an example. If they really cared so much they would not hesitate to pay taxes instead of employing clever accountants to avoid it or they could volunteer like the 700,000 Britons that have signed up. Maybe a better idea would be to donate some of their stacks of cash to a system working tirelessly to keep this population alive and thriving.
When it comes down to it who is the most important person, is it the nurse who earns 25k a year, below the median wage, working 12-hour shifts a day in day out helping people, or is it the celebrity who earns 2 million a year, has 3 million Instagram followers and takes photos promoting their latest waist trainers, protein shakes, clothing brands and anything else associated with our vain, materialistic world.