#CLUBQUARANTINE...For The Culture...For Our Community
Welp...It looks like the time has finally arrived. It’s the end times! CORONAVIRUS…CORONAVIRUS!!!
Everything is shutting down! The moment when the world finally loses its shit and everything must shut down. But what else should we expect at this point?
The hows and whys of the country's so ill-equipped and poorly prepared response to the spread of the virus are easily understood when you think about how the current administration has performed thus far in the midst of tragedy and uncertainty. “He who shall not be named" assuming the position as Commander in Chief was the Russian President’s dream-come-true and how we got to this point as a global society is a result of their efforts. But truly, those who peddle division and ignorance don’t deserve our attention or energy.
The more important questions in times of uncertainty are: Who is most at risk of harm? What can we do to support those people immediately? What changes are we going to make as we move forward? and When will those changes be implemented?, because the “who” we’re referring to has already been forced to suffer and wait too long.
Poverty is already a burden, and takes a significant tole on the mental and physical well being of millions of people in the US and billions globally. In the midst of a global panic, poverty intensifies the difficulty of day to day inconveniences, and presents new and more nuanced problematic obstacles that will undoubtedly result in lifelong consequences. The people living paycheck to paycheck are less likely to be prepared for the financial shocks of an emergency, things like stocking up on food and supplies. People experiencing homelessness are going to need even more support and attention, as they are already likely to have untreated health conditions and unmet social needs.
Looking at our [read: American] society from a high-level glance, it is easy to see the impact that neglectful capitalism has on our ability as communities to maneuver through a global pandemic, major drought, wildfires or some other natural and even man-made disasters. Our schools struggle to produce critical thinkers, our dilapidated roads make it difficult to travel long distances and underdeveloped public transit systems prevent the kind of movement that could reduce carbon emissions and boost productivity. All of this, and healthcare, housing shortages, toxic food, the list goes on and ultimately the problem is, many people have more access than necessary, while some have none at all.
To answer the question, of how: People can be really uninformed, careless and even nasty sometimes. They aren’t always intentionally awful, but, as an example, because America is the birthplace of “good enough”, we can see how that cavalier attitude is a breeding ground for lackadaisical standards and eventually grotesque conditions; just watch a few episodes of Gordon Ramsay’s 24hrs To Hell and Back. If you’ve ever worked in the service or retail industry or walked into a public restroom during a festival or large gathering, then you know adults can be guilty of some extremely disgusting, sophomoric acts. It should be no surprise that diseases spread by exchanging body fluids would be so challenging and quickly pervasive. We leave traces of our body everywhere we go, shedding about .03 - .09 grams of skin per hour. And further, back to the importance of education, many people just simply don’t know how to do better.
The CDC is providing new guidance, encouraging people to clean more effectively, socially distance, and avoid behaviors that could potentially expose vulnerable populations to COVID-19, the Corona virus. A new campaign #ALONETOGETHER aims to create community during the shutdown. Check out these links if you have questions:
The why part of this is a bit more tricky. Simply put, ignorant people are easier to manage from an authoritative standpoint but those same individuals become harder to organize in times of struggle. The American economy, and global economy to an extent, thrives on its stratified nature, and in order to maintain this hierarchy, one group must be able to maintain control over resources, like nourishment and information while another group must maintain consistent need. Many would argue that capitalism has spurred innovation but they forget that necessity and collaboration has always, and will always, result in more creativity and solution than competition and scarcity.
Those who have been left out from humane consideration will always bear the brunt of the trauma when there is a new disease to combat or natural disaster to clean up, or even a man made one. The healing is always left as the responsibility of the oppressed, as we have rarely ever seen oppressors take accountability for the grievances they’ve created and center the victims and their pain.
Now what? What are we to do as a local community, as a global community to move forward, to fix the mess. It is going to be up to each of us to contribute our talents to the betterment of our community. Take DJ DNICE for example, who spent an inspiring 12 hours spinning for over 100,000 people in #CLUBQUARANTINE.
Dignitaries and politicians, actors, hip-hop legends, revolutionaries, they were all in the building. The hat changes. The livestream dropping. The climb to 100K viewers! Naomi Campbell gave a shout out to Quincy Jones!
Wondering if this man was ever going to stop to eat, drink or go to the restroom. Ava Duvernay, Missy Elliott, Timbaland, Justin Timberlake, MC Lyte, Naughty by Nature, and just about everyone you could want to party with joined the party, even MICHELLE OBAMA!!
It was a celebration of life with reverence for what we’re currently experiencing and the ancestors who keep the beat pumping in our spirits. This is the kind of experience we need more of. It created such a deep sense of community and eased so much of the built up stress after a week of social distancing and voluntary isolation. We miss each other. We need each other. DNICE’s mega virtual party was a moment that we will recount to future generations as we try to explain the sheer craziness of this day and age in the world.
What a time it is to be alive! So, to answer the question of “When?”: NOW!
Those of us lucky enough to still be alive owe it to our ancestors and the generations to come to see that we each have what is needed to survive this time. Whether it is a dance break, cooking lessons, or even cash, now is the time for us to corral.
Indya Moore spent the last week collecting money through CashApp and distributing it to trans activists for food and supplies.
If you have time to jump on Instagram of Facebook and go live with homeschool help for parents, or free home work outs, or if you just want to give everyone a party for the decade. Remember to tip when you can, use that CashApp, PayPal, Venmo, Zelle…whatever works for you! But we should be supporting each other’s talent. PERIODT!
We can also make sure the people in our community, those closest to us have access to the resources they need. Whether it is virtual mental health resources, access to food, electricity, and water, we all, from corporations, to elected officials to educators, from chefs to trainers, and everyone in between have to find a way to do what we can. While some of us are frantically stocking our shelves for the unknown, we also need to remember that there are people in our neighborhoods, our coworkers, our children’s classmates, the service providers who keep our lives moving every day are also in jeopardy and may not be able to shield themselves with the insulation that capital can provide.
We need to continue to protect ourselves from the spread of this virus and the downwind consequences of these necessary preventative measures. This experience is going change the world, and we have the opportunity to make sure it changes for the better. We have to make sure that we center the most vulnerable in this time and prioritize our personal well-being, emotional and physical health.
Hopefully, if we’re smart and willing enough, we can develop new habits and behaviors to better support each other, our community, family and friends. Hopefully, we can maintain this sense of togetherness and community when or if life resumes to the ways of yesterday.