It was the beginning of 2020. That’s when the Plan replaced the Law.
The Plan has become everything. We all live in its shadow.
The Plan establishes which businesses can open and which ones must shut. It decides which industries live and which must die. It dictates when you can leave home and why. It closes schools and playgrounds. The Plan determines whether or not you can visit nana.
The Plan has banned meetings and social gatherings. It curtails funerals, births and weddings.
It disrupts religious services.
It has seen police threaten lone surfers with arrest.
The Plan is not written but is announced each day at one from the Podium of Truth.
Unity is demanded. Dissension is censored. The citizenry is a single team of five million.
The Podium denounces non-compliers. They put us all at risk. Family, friends and neighbours are enlisted to report and admonish.
The Plan has one simple purpose: the elimination of covid-19.
There are no trade-offs, weighing of costs or benefits, there is no alternative.
The Plan is underpinned by fear. The news is of Chinese dropping in the streets, officers and medical personnel in hazmat suits, borders shut, cities locked down, supermarkets being dangerous, deep cleaned and always there is a ticker-tape record of deaths and infections. Experts talk of mass graves and tens of thousands dead.
We are endlessly admonished through public speakers to wash our hands, keep our distance, sneeze into our elbow, mask up, stay home, be kind.
And then there is us. We are the resistance. You don’t know us. We look just like you.
But we are different.
We don’t jump fearfully out of your way. We don’t cower behind perspex or cover our faces. We smile. We meet. We talk. We laugh. We argue. We don’t allow politicians or officials to tell us who we can and can’t hug.
Because the Plan has a flaw: it can’t control our minds. Or what we think.