by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
When we defeat this virus … it is unlikely that the problems we confronted before the pandemic will have magically evaporated. This mobilization isn’t simply going to unite us and rebuild lost solidarity and common purpose. We are likely still to be beset by isolation and division, and it will still be necessary to take on the hard work of reknitting our social fabric. …
… But maybe our grasp and perception of those problems will have changed in ways that matter more than we might first imagine. Being forced to confront a greater crisis together can help us put our complaints in perspective—to see that some of them are smaller than they seemed and less significant but that others run deeper than we gave them credit for and require our attention. …
… We might walk away from this nightmare a little more appreciative of those little, gentle joys of human contact that normally fill our lives—sitting in a restaurant near enough to other patrons to overhear their gossip; a high-five with a stranger at the ballpark when your team pulls off a win; a handshake at church; a hug for an old friend who shares hard news.
By grasping the value of the things we take for granted, we could better understand what we have to lose—and so we might not be so eager to dismiss what we have because of what we lack, to disparage what America has achieved because of all that’s left to do, or to casually assert that our way of life has failed because it leaves us searching for deeper meaning. We might be a little less persuaded by calls to burn down our established institutions.
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