I saw this letter to the editor the other day and have now come to agree with Daniel Andrews totally. Social isolation must be absolute, no exceptions, and must last until the Corona Virus is completely eradicated, not just here but across the world. Here was the letter which I found completely compelling.
My partner and I are around 70 but due to recent health issues and underlying conditions we are in a very high risk category, to the extent that I am not prepared to risk experimenting with life as usual. Can I say that neither of us is a vegetable in a nursing home. We have lives and plans, are active with our friends, we travel and have children and grandchildren. We have many years to enjoy.
A look around the world highlights that Australia is better off than some mainly because of the tough measures we have taken, not in spite of them. To suggest the extent of the battle is to isolate the vulnerable while the rest of you go about your business is short-sighted. As a member of the vulnerable let me say I’m not prepared to take one for the team.
He described my own situation perfectly and what else is there to say? We vulnerable members of the community are not prepared to accept such selfishness from the rest of you, from all of those younger people who wish to get on with their lives, earn an income, save for the future, pay off their mortgages and continue meeting up with their friends and relations. Do they not understand that this will put people such as myself at much greater risk? Already something like fifty Australians have died from the Corona Virus. If present trends continue, this number might well rise to over 500.
With GDP around $1.5 trillion, the loss of 10 percent of our economic growth for the coming year is a mere $150 billion, although the actual number may, of course, be even higher. But sticking with the $150 billion figure, the cost of preserving those additional 500 from an early death, will come at a cost of only $300 million dollars for each life saved. Of course, even to think of money saved at a time like this is an ethical abomination.
The country has made a moral commitment to preserve lives at all cost. With my own life in such danger, along with the lives of all of our friends who are in that same boat, it would be an eternal disgrace for the country to choose to abandon us to the possibility of an early demise, or if not exactly early, to a demise sooner than might otherwise have occurred.
Good for Daniel Andrews who has shown such leadership in ensuring that every life is seen as precious.