Australia has shown that the response to a pandemic needs to be strict. Lives and a nation’s economy hang in the balance
As a trained epidemiologist with postgraduate qualifications in anthropology, I never thought I’d be a “participant observer” of a pandemic on two continents. But there I was, boomeranging in just five weeks from Australia to New York and back again. From a commitment to science, communitas and mateship here, to defiant disregard for public health, contempt for science and mystical faith in a super-spreader leader in the United States.
I was travelling to visit my mother. She has lived in New York all her life and had been locked down for nearly eight months. Nothing very unusual there. But my mother is 106 ½ years old. She lived through the Great Influenza of 1918 that took the life of her baby sister. She was married and widowed three times. As she often says, “I’m a survivor.” But for how long?
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