Rallies, Rivers and Regret..!

Robert Clements

Now and then, one hears of the death of an MP or MLA succumbing to Covid-19!

As I glance at the small picture that accompanies the newspaper article, I wonder what their last thoughts were as they lay in hospital bed under the deadly tentacles of the Green Monster. My thoughts shift to the deadly Virus as it watches us fighting and sparring on trivialities instead of joining forces and battling it.

“Hey!” shouts same Corona Virus as it stares at it’s brother virus’s, all crouching outside a housing society waiting for the residents to make one wrong move; either coming out without a mask, or walking too closely with one another, “Hey, we’re wasting our time here, trying to pick up one victim at a time!”

“What do you plan to do?” asks another of the Covid monsters wearily, “These humans have learnt to become wary of us!”

“Wrong way to get in!” smiles the first Virus, “I’ve just finished a politician and realized all we need is to travel with them to where they are going, and as they spit hatred and rabid talk from closely guarded platforms, we move in hordes and feast on the unwary thousands below!”

“Where?” asked a Virus excitedly.

“Election rallies!” said the first Virus, as it crawled onto the limousine of a politician and rode all the way to its human feast.
And as speeches kept crowds in a state of frenzy and as hatred was passed around through microphones, from one body to another the viruses leaped and jumped, free and undeterred!

And later as same politicians, instead of holding back their beloved voters from religious gatherings in buildings and rivers, decided it was easier to allow them to gather in millions, and same viruses could nearly be heard giggling and chuckling as they jumped from one victim to a thousand others and then infected the entire nation as devotees came back to their homes!

I look at the picture of the dead MLA or MP. How easily he could have used his leadership position to stop these suicide missions. How easily, he could have decided to change his speech of division and provocation to that of protection.

And now as lockdowns rule the roost, and poor immigrants start their journey home again, with no surety from where their next meal will come from, I look at same pictures of dead leaders and ask, “Was it worth it?”

And is it a tear that rolls down my newspaper from an obituary pic?

“Too late for regret departed soul,” I whisper, “but you leaders who are alive, will one day be held responsible for this!”

“He! He! He!” laugh the delighted viruses as they infest the innocent, waiting masses through whom they’ve crept into those same housing societies they couldn’t enter before, “That was a grand plan indeed..!”
Robert Clements is a newspaper columnist and author. He blogs at www.bobsbanter.com and can be reached at bobsbanter@gmail.com