Our Pandemic Finish Line

cover-pandemic-finishline Let's declare a Target & make a plan to hit it.
Imagine running a marathon with no finish line.

That's what living through this pandemic feels like.

And after enduring all the pain and sacrifices for over a year, not only is there no end in sight, but things are getting worse.

There is a difference between managing and leading, and so far the govt has been doing the best they can to manage this crisis, and now It's time to lead us out of it by giving us a finish line we can see, and a plan to get there. 

 Declare a target

Biden promised Americans July 4th as their finish line, their reward even … so that American citizens can see an end to their troubles. 

But it's a conditional promise.

They could win their freedom from Covid by July 4th only if the American people cooperate by following the protocols and getting vaccinated.

Why not do the same here in TnT?

What's a doable finish line to finally end our Covid marathon?

What's our national event or holiday that would motivate us as a country to do the hard work, to continue to make the sacrifices to cross that finish line?

 Carnival 2022

What about carnival 2022

We've given up so much for so long that Carnival 2022 would be an explosion of creativity, commerce, celebration and sheer JOY.

Why not declare it our pandemic end goal?

Our July 4th. 

Our Finish Line.

I know, not everyone is a fan of Carnival, but regardless of what you think about it, carnival is a vital sign of our country.

It's a reason we're on the map,

a mood-lift for the country, and

a breeding ground for our culture. 

 Christmas will benefit

And guess what, Christmas will also benefit because if we are to have a normal carnival season, our social emergence must begin in December, in time to have a normal Christmas as well.

 But our leaders must declare a goal

And define the plan to get there. 

On Sept 29th 2020 our PM declared carnival 2021 cancelled.

Out of the question he said, and with no vaccine yet approved it was a cautious move.

But now we have vaccines that are becoming available, so why not make a pro-carnival declaration now? Instead of adopting a wait-and-see attitude, why not BE BOLD?

Remove any doubt, and encourage carnival 2022 planning and preparation now.

Why not a pro-carnival goal

 As soon as the numbers start turning around wouldn't it be great to hear our PM say in a press conference soon ...

"This govt is committed to having carnival in 2022.

We can't guarantee we'll have a completely normal carnival season, but we are going to do everything possible to have perhaps the best carnival season we've had in decades.

Because as bad as things may look now, we will not be defeated by this virus and a normal 2022 carnival season will signal our victory against this pandemic and announce that Trinidad and Tobago is back in business. "

It could be a Churchillian moment for our PM.

If he said something like that, Carnival 2022 could then be the goal to harness the power of our people to beat this virus.

 Tell us the plan to get there

 To get to herd immunity I think we'll need something like 70% of the adult population vaccinated. 

That's going to mean 100K per month beginning in June, ramping up to well over 200K a month as everybody needs a second dose.

 What Govt needs to do

Govt needs to get the vaccines and set up the infrastructure to make this level of vaccination possible. 

And they may need to mount a PNM elections-scale campaign, to communicate how to get the vaccines, and why they are safe and effective.

Because fake news is so widespread that perhaps hundreds of thousands of us do not believe the vaccines work, or worse.

They could also set up planning committees with carnival stakeholders to create carnival scenarios depending on how things are working out.

 What we need to do

And we the people of TnT, need to do our part as well. 

Once we can see the finish line, once carnival 2022 is declared our goal—for example—I know we can endure the social distancing, mask-wearing, and staying positive.

This means NOT spreading every negative, scary thing we see on social media.

Just like a marathon, we have to believe we can do it to cross that finish line.

And MOST Importantly we must get vaccinated, and help our friends and family understand why it's important.

But our leaders must lead

Our govt has the power to declare the finish line that we all need to motivate us to endure, not like a fairy tale, but actually as something we can achieve if we all work together. 

We don't have to have everything in place before declaring such a goal. 

JFK declared America was going to the moon without any idea of how to make that happen, and Winston Churchill certainly didn't know how he would prevail against the Nazis when he told the British people this would be their FINEST HOUR.

And maybe we'll have to have to postpone carnival by a couple months, but let's shoot for the stars and settle for the moon if need be.

I think the people of Trinidad and Tobago are up to such a challenge. I hope our government is up to it as well.

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Wednesday, 01 December 2021
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