It’s not over when we decide. It’s over when he decides, the virus. It is not like in the wars that we have known and which end with an agreement between the parties, winners and losers, and there is an X day in which peace is established.
Here and now the game of life, and of human lives, is played with different rules, without knowing with certainty how long it will last or how much it will still cost us in terms of suffering, sacrifices, losses. but yet The Italy of our despair seems prey to a mirage: the Coronavirus is gone and therefore we are freei like before it overwhelmed us, more than a year ago. Rivers of people with lowered masks, but now even without, take back with unconscious enthusiasm what a malevolent fate has taken away from us for too long. Spacing of at least one meter? Wash your hands long and well? But who cares. And hurry up to get rid of that gallows curfew at 10pm, which is sick of restrictions imposed from above.: parties and small parties of the majority cry out loudly, enthralled by the electoral report that riding popular resentment always guarantees. Without forgetting the coffee at the counter, not to drink outside, otherwise what a pleasure it is. Freedom, freedom, and if a few hundred more deaths a day escape us, if instead of 120,000 the victims will become 130,000 or more, let’s look ahead that it is already late, so now there is the vaccine.
Understandable hurry to start again, but beware of jerks in the engine. It is true that the pandemic has already cost us 900,000 jobs, with the prospect that the figure will still grow considerably, affecting above all women, young people, VAT numbers, migrants, with the South seeing an already overt drift increasing dramatically. It is true that the vaccines are starting to march at the pace desired by General Figliuolo. It is also true that the contagion curve decreases. Slowly however, e still having 146 cases out of 100,000 inhabitants is better than the 157 of last week but it is far from the 50 cases that would represent the quota necessary to declare that the epidemic is under control. And then there would be the variants, the English one above all, then the Brazilian and now the Indian, plus the uncomfortable growth of infected children between 0 and 9 years (we are 200 cases per 100 thousand inhabitants).
The virus does not treat, its vital function is to multiply. If he finds roads blocked, he is not programmed to give up but to look for others, attacking age groups that are not yet protected. The average age of new cases has dropped to 42 years, that of hospitalized patients to 66. Overwhelming the barriers of precautions, transforming them into prohibitions to be repealed, paves the way for backfires that risk burning, in addition to our health, also the laborious national rebirth plans just sent to Brussels. Those projects are based on realization times that do not include abrupt and lasting interruptions. Contributing more or less consciously to jeopardizing its start does not do a great service to a country that has an urgent and urgent need to restart.
Virologists, the serious ones at least, agree that perhaps it was worth waiting a few more weeks before taking the “reasoned risk”, as Prime Minister Draghi said, of opening almost everything, repainting the country in yellow. Beyond the intentions, the message that seems to have arrived, unfortunately, does not include reasonableness but leaves the field free to risk, which thus becomes incalculable. The combined effect of wear and tear from limitations and the desire to recover lost time seems to be triggering the reaction of those who, after a long fast, think of canceling hunger by gorging on food. And as long as the health of the individual is at stake, everyone has to deal with their own ability to manage themselves. But here the game is collective, each new “positive” increases the possibility of triggering many others, in a spiral to the worst that is unlikely to stop by itself, least of all by contrasting the illusion that evil has disappeared with reality, much less radiant , numbers and facts.
We paid an exorbitant price for the “enjoy summer” of 2020: on 3 August we had dropped to more than 159 infections in one day, two and a half months later they had already skyrocketed to more than 7,000, and the second-third wave still had to unleash all their devastating power. But now there are vaccines, which is an indubitable and hopefully decisive advantage. But precisely in order not to compromise its effectiveness, indeed by extending coverage to the least protected categories as soon as possible, perhaps a strong and authoritative reminder of the civil duties that living with a pandemic entails would not be wrong. Those who respect the precautions cannot become exceptions. The exceptions should be the irresponsible of “that’s enough”, whether they swarm unmasked in alleys and haunts or they perform from the red seats of Parliament.
It seems that this is not the time to address divisive issues, or at least this is the opinion of representatives of the multi-party that makes up the executive. And in fact, with this alibi any confrontation is avoided, in order not to upset the right or the left, in turn. Underlying this implicit pact, a first great common goal: to defeat the pandemic. Very well, but how? Relying on Providence, giving political cover to the noisy front of the no-mask, no-vax, no-lex, or calling our community to respect due, indeed obligatory, to the world norms for containing the virus? This, now, is the problem. And the Draghi government, even at the risk of splitting up, cannot get around it. The boundary between convalescence and relapse is very thin.