The Berlin Spectator
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The Berlin Perspective: 2020 Needs a Rewind Button

This decade did not really have a good start at all. Watching the events unfold in disbelief is what most of us are doing.

Where is the Flux Capacitor when you need it? A simple rewind or fast forward button would help too. Here we are, in Germany. The political crisis which shook the country just days ago already took a backseat in the news because the Coronavirus crisis is hitting us.

Tsunami in Slow Motion

Remember celebrating on New Year’s Eve? That was only two months ago. Since, things went to sh*t. This feels like watching the tsunami coming closer and closer in slow motion, from the beach. As the wave rises higher and higher, something makes us just stand there and wait for it to hit.

Sure, this is not a war and it is not the plague that is coming to get us, but “only” the Coronavirus, an illness most will survive and many will not even feel. On the other hand, the fatality rate is at 1.5 to 2 percent and therefore 15 to 20 times higher than that of the flu.

The If and the When

What makes this worrisome is the virus’ ruthlessness. How it races across the globe is scary. It’s not like we did not know. In the Sunday editions of our newspapers, there was always some CDC guy or other scientist who would say the question was not if a worldwide pandemic would hit, but when.

Going into this determined, doing things right, getting through it and surviving is what we can and should do. Remaining calm will help. So will helping others, which will turn out to be rather difficult since we are not supposed to approach anyone during a pandemic, once it hits our surrounding, for their and for our sake.

Intro to Novel

Well, this is the information age. We can at least communicate digitally, as long as the electricity and other systems are up and running. We can chat, make video calls and send people photos of trash cans filled with Kleenex and breathing masks.

Would the spread of the virus have been prevented if the Chinese government had actually listened to Doctor Li Wenliang and taken immediate measures, instead of punishing him for telling the truth? Maybe. This is what makes this whole thing so unnecessary.

If this situation was not real and tragic, it could be a great intro to an entertaining novel entitled ‘Corona’ or ‘The Virus From Hell’. But it is actually happening. So let’s get through this the best way we can. And let us remember those infected in China, South Korea, Italy and elsewhere, and those who died.

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