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Life Arts    H3'ed 4/3/20

Love in time of covid-19

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I'm struck by the fact that all our pandemics, in fact all pandemics are courtesy of 'civilization', by which I mean agriculture, overcrowded cities, full of sh*t both animal and human, home of rats and fleas, carriers of plague.

Our obsession with cheap meat means overcrowding, force feeding and otherwise torturing animals, all in such close proximity that even their viruses learn to jump between species. Voila, sars, covid-19, etc. natives never had 'colds' or 'flu' let alone diphtheria, malaria and on and on. Don't forget cancers from addictions and plain poisonous wastes deposited blithely as time bombs over the past two centuries of 'progress'. These are all thanks to 'civilization'. Time for a rethink.

Covid-19 inadvertently shows us the way. The Matt Strand-Christa Wilcox wedding in BC, on a remote beach with only family members (including uncles and nephews) willing to brave it, is very touching. Who could they turn to?

The much pilloried nuclear family. The only strong bonds in this crisis are blood bonds, marriage bonds.

Matt: There's an undercurrent of fear and uncertainty in the world. I could feel it. I don't think we're important in the grand scheme.

The Star's Bruce Arthur insisted: But they are.

No. Matt is right. They are not important individually, but as a bond, a devoted relationship. It's relations that all reality is built on, and that crises strengthen (or weaken, if not 'important' to your survival). Matt and Christa will hold a big, festive marriage next year, 'when the new world arrives, and we can all hold one another again.' Even if, God forbid, they don't make it, they will die happy.

Covid-19's 'promise': an end to promiscuity, gaylib and gender dissolution. Human contact is precious, sex is sacred and only for your partner. AIDS should have made that clear, but it's hard to restrain yourself, especially when consumer fetishism reins, when 'more, faster' is the mantra, the sky's the limit, anything goes.

I suddenly realized: this is exactly like WWII. We are united to fight Nature's 'fascism'. I.e., something inhuman, cruel, senseless, powerful, evil. That we produced ourselves and then blame on the 'other'. It's definitely NOT WWI, certainly not the frivolous war on terrorism.

When we make our relations firm, they protect us like a shield. Death doesn't sting so badly. We have treated Nature as a thing, to exploit and play with. We have no relationship with Nature, and so, surprise, Nature suddenly appears hostile, an enemy. We must treat each 'other' with love and respect. This goes for our relationship with Nature as the ultimate 'other'.

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Eric writes for Al-Ahram Weekly and PressTV. He specializes in Russian and Eurasian affairs. His "Postmodern Imperialism: Geopolitics and the Great Games", "From Postmodernism to Postsecularism: Re-emerging Islamic Civilization" and "Canada (more...)

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