Whatever CQ

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The coronavirus disease 2019 curve is alive and well in the Philippines, maintaining its upward trajectory with every passing day while our government’s best of the best do what they can to contain the contagion.

To say that our government’s efforts have been inadequate is an understatement, but as beggars cannot be choosers, Filipinos cannot be complainers. Our voters chose this type of governance so we will just have to deal with it with all the stoicism we can muster. When it comes to dealing with COVID-19, those who like to dance may pick their favorite ditty and those who would rather use gasoline on their masks are free to do so. Meanwhile, the ones unhappy with the way things have been handled should resist complaining because that is apparently unpatriotic and could nowadays even be construed as a terrorist act by the implementers of our grossly mutated law of the land.

GCQ, MGCQ, ECQ. Whatever CQ that our government’s task force on COVID will recommend and our dear leader will announce in his rambling late night talk shows, it feels like nothing really matters anymore. Those who go through the motions of protecting us with their decisions are already protected by our taxes, getting themselves priority tested and with unhampered access to quality healthcare thanks to our tax pesos while we wallow in helplessness, fear and frustration.

Whatever CQ they declare doesn’t really matter anymore because it doesn’t apply to them in the first place. They can still go anywhere they please any time they want. They can say anything and lie without repercussions. They can be tested as many times as they want to protect themselves, their beloved families, and most importantly, their immunocompromised boss. Even if their regular testing reveals them to be infected with the dreaded coronavirus, our taxes ensure that they have access to the best healthcare in the land. Their businesses and livelihoods are not affected by this pandemic because their income is withheld from our pay slips and every time we make a purchase.

They can afford to make boo boos and mistakes that cause even more sickness, death, and destitute poverty because they have never been held accountable. Despite all the lapses, all the time and money wasted with nothing to show but a still-rising number of COVID-19 infections and deaths, nobody has been fired. Everyone can lie or make irresponsible statements and its fine. Just like the CQ status in affected areas all over the country, everything they say can always be taken back. Everyone is doing such a good job that we shouldn’t complain. Best of the best!

Anyway, rant off.

The point I started trying to make before I got sidetracked is that we are on our own. Whatever CQ our government declares, it is ultimately up to us to keep ourselves and our loved ones as safe as possible from COVID-19.
Wear a mask when in public and when interacting with people other than your nuclear family. Wear a mask all the time if you don’t feel well. Constant social and physical distancing will keep us safer than camouflage uniforms. Contact trace every time you leave your home base or have other people enter your breathing space. That’s all we can do right now, regardless of whatever CQ is declared wherever you are.

If you come to think of it, the situation now is exponentially worse now than it was in March when we were locked down. Government blames us for wasting 3 months to be here where we are right now. There’s no point in complaining because it should’ve become crystal clear that they are not capable or willing to do things differently at this point. If our country is going to do better, it’s going to be up to us. Government officials who have bungled this COVID-19 response won’t lose their jobs no matter how epic the failure because they have the best security of tenure package in the universe but we could lose our lives or the lives of our vulnerable loved ones.
COVID-19 is here. Local transmission is real. Let us stop ruing the time and opportunity lost to the mistakes of the past 3 months and look forward.

Learn your lesson. Assume nothing from government. There is no more ayuda. Don’t bank on mass testing. No comprehensive contact tracing system no health care system upgrades up to now means nothing is coming. Expect more LSI’s from heavily infected areas. The curve is not flattening.

Just remind yourself that if you get infected and require hospitalization, you’d better have the money for the bills, currently estimated at around PhP 1.3 million. If you cannot afford that, then put in place all the precautions to prevent infection for you and your loved ones.

We’ve got mask wearing down. Unless your street gets hit with a case, there is nothing we can do about mass testing. The most doable thing we can do at this point is intensify contact tracing efforts among ourselves. Workplaces and families need to make it a habit to list down every time members go out and/or come in contact with visitors. Take down the when’s, where’s and who’s like a security guard. As things will most likely still get worse before they get better, this information will help us contact trace for ourselves if something does happen because we cannot count on government to do that for us. Just because they’ve given up on us, doesn’t mean we should throw in the towel too.

Whatever Community Quarantine was on April 2020, it’s already July so we are now shifting to Home Quarantine Protocols that we ourselves can implement and enforce in our own homes and workplaces. We have no choice because that’s all we can do if we want to protect ourselves from a virus that has been unleashed unto our communities by the same people who were supposed to be responsible for competently protecting us.*


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October 2020