Science, politics and the catastrophic division during the pandemic

Why the discord between coronavirus deniers and coronavirus non-deniers is fabricated and should be dismissed

During the time of the Covid-19 pandemic we could argue that there has been no front of argument and debate more divisive and aggressive around the word, than that of whether coronavirus exists or not.

From trending hashtags like #covidiots to rallying demonstrations against lockdowns and other pandemic related measures, ad hominem attacks, labeling and characterizations fly back and forth between social media users.

On the other hand, people’s reactionary stance by denying the existence of coronavirus is being used by governments as a means to an alibi and deferring responsibility to the people when cases, intubations and deaths are on the rise according to their own reports. Instead of answering to the people, therefore, for the failure of sufficiently handling the pandemic, they can thus accuse a segment of their citizens of it.

However, the conundrum (whether coronavirus exists or not) is a fabricated one, and is spuriously dividing the people.

Why is it fabricated?

Because in the current context, whether the problem exists or not is unimportant. What is important is the fact that it is recognized and accepted as real by the sum, almost, of the global scientific community, the one with authority on the issue.

Even if coronavirus didn’t exist, it is a fact that there is something that is killing people to a level that, should it remain uncontrolled, we will have situations like the ones we witnessed in Italy and elsewhere in the beginning of the year. A fact that is officially recognized by all governments around the world.

Therefore, what is important is to watch how governments handle and contain a problem they have recognized as existing.

And what is fact is that at least Western governments have proven themselves inefficient in containing the virus or handling it properly as a dangerous problem, whether it actually exists or not.

A problem which, by their own official attestation, is of a medical, social, and economic nature.

A problem that threatens Life but also property/livelihood in several different ways, and from which they have failed to protect people in any of these fronts.

On the contrary, on many occasions they have made matters worse or more complicated without having given even a single viable solution to the problem “pandemic” or managed to keep people from being exposed to the illness.

It is therefore a big propagandist trap to engage in arguments about whether Covid-19 exists or not or how serious it is, because that is not our issue. Rather, our issue is how Covid-19 is being handled and approached by governments and governmental policy at any given time:
The main motivation of Covid-19 deniers is, by their own attestation on the average, to stop policies that are toxic for life, social life, and economic life in general. They are therefore trying to prove that coronavirus doesn’t exist and so measures against it will be rendered moot.

However this approach is a fruitless one in terms of solving the problem (regardless of its phrasing) because even the experts that are less alarmist about how dangerous Covid-19 is recognize its existence and only offer estimations, not facts: that is they are giving additional data without making absolute statements before common consensus has been reached within the scientific community, something that will not occur anytime soon. Nor could they do so in good conscience while the phenomenon is still in development.

This means that no government will accept that coronavirus does not exist if such has not been declared by the grand majority of the global scientific community and the corresponding international authorities like W.H.O., even if the absolute sum of their citizens demand it.

Therefore, the only thing that covid deniers achieve is, at this stage, is to take attention away from the real issue threatening us all, the handling of which would yield the results they’re trying to get, while at the same time accidentally giving governments an excuse for their mistakes, the high risk of their decisions, and any superficially taken and potentially criminally negligent policies. Covid deniers thus become targets in the blame game, scapegoats and perhaps, in the end, sacrificial lambs to give society for this global disaster.

Where should we all keep our focus, regardless whether we believe or not in the existence of Covid-19?

We should all focus on governmental policies for dealing with a grave problem, such as a pandemic that impacts everyone on a global scale, not unlike the 2008 economic crisis which was caused, by their accounts, due to banking malfeasance.

The action taken by politicians and governments is and should remain a constant object of scrutiny by all of us to judge and evaluate. That is the mandate under any kind of Democratic governance and ultimately according to Human Rights advocating common logic, survival and living well.

If the measures taken don’t make sense or are not applied in a way that protect and benefit us all equally without needing to sacrifice segments of society (like, for example, the middle class), “due to not having adequate funds, capacities or goals” of the state, i.e. the government, then there are grounds for decrying, judging, and evaluating on a level that has nothing to do with scientific issues. Rather, the feedback will be based on in vivo, factual evidence or logical inferences.

That’s where we should focus all our efforts and our political, activist, and Democratic discourse, making governments answerable for their action taken without being able to avoid criticism or responsibility by using PR to point fingers at some of us.

Olga G. Yeritsidou, B.A., M.A.

Tanya Maria Geritsidou, B.A., M.A.