It’s been called “a war.”
I think I understand the intent of the employ of this metaphor. The nation-to-and-by-nation response to the novel coronavirus necessarily has involved a culture-wide, top-to-bottom social mobilization of human will and resources. Just the sort of activity and reactivity that wars demand and provoke.
Still, for me, war, generally speaking, involves conscious combatants. And the novel coronavirus, though powerful its force and devastating its effect, lacks sentient sensibilities. It is devoid of mindful malevolent intention. It does not, cannot choose to assault this or that nation or region, this or that people or person.
Nevertheless, it seems to me that a war of human, thus, willful opponents has broken out in a number of spheres or “theaters of operations” between and among all those who:
Demand pride of place, jockeying for position, tussling with all others in the exercises of power and authority to act and react to the coronavirus crisis;
Cast blame on all others whom they perceive as not having exercised power and authority appropriately, prudently, thus, having acted and reacted wrongly, negligently;
Stand at center stage, arguing – the louder, the better – for the certainty of their positions against all others who, on their own center stages, are doing the same;
Make scapegoats, claiming the crisis is the fault of “the other” – whether another nation or region, another people or person.
Again, I think I understand how and why the global engagement with the novel coronavirus can be termed “a war.”
Whatever we call it, concerning the wellbeing of the human race, three things are clear to me.
1. We, the global community, must win this “war.”
2. We only can win together.
3. We cannot win by fighting against one another.