‘God, why don’t you motherfuckers stay at home?‘, shouted Cat Arambulo-Antonio at her TV, as she watched workers shuffle through checkpoints from the comforts of her own home.
When asked how frontliners will travel to work following the ban on pvblic transportation, Cabinet Secretary Karlos Nograles gave what sounded like an ultimatum: either take a private car or walk.
And as usual, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo flaunted his dismissive attitude during an interview with an exasperated Pinky Webb, who pressed for clarity amidst a lockdown criticized for being vague and inconsistent with its guidelines.
There are a lot of questions on the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon. CNN Philippines Senior Anchor Pinky Webb speaks to Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo to know more on the stricter precautionary measures. https://t.co/sDo55hwVGt pic.twitter.com/ngKxMVokpY
— CNN Philippines (@cnnphilippines) March 16, 2020
All three and others who have displayed similar callousness have been either called out or widely criticized by people on social media, with some issuing apologies soon after. If there’s any true ‘bLesSinG’ in this crisis, as tone-deaf people would say, it’s that harsh reality checks are being sent to individuals drunk on privilege.
This lockdown serves as a reminder to the least-affected that hey, not everyone gets to be as lucky as we do, so it would pay to be a little more sensitive. Not everyone gets to type on laptops for a bit, sip some tea and take a nap whenever we feel like it.
Some have to risk going out and exposing themselves to the virus just so they could make a living. Until recently, others had to trudge for hours on end just to make it home. Believe it or not, if they had a choice, these people would be staying indoors as well.
Most likely, these risk-takers are the same individuals who’ll act as our support system during the lockdown, such as supermarket employees or medical workers.
LOOK: A staff nurse who is working on the frontline of COVID-19 at a hospital in Quezon City had to walk for an hour to…
Don’t get us wrong: It’s not a crime to be rich or to be born with privilege. There is no conspiracy to persecute the elite just because they have a ‘head-start’ in life.
All the pvblic is asking for is empathy. And empathy does not have a class requirement.
For every mom in the movie Parasite, there are the Ramon Angs, the Ayalas, and the Vico Sottos of the world. These are people who, despite their upper-class status, aren’t blind from the plight of the people around them.
Empathy only requires sensitivity. And with all the problems the country is facing right now, empathy is the one resource we need the most.