April 26, 2020

And in the midst of this terrible despair, it offers us a chance to rethink the doomsday machine we have built for ourselves.

Where to even begin. I've spent a lot of time trying to process this moment in my journal(s), but I don't know that I have any words of value to offer the world. As of today, I am safe. I am healthy. The same can be said of my family and friends. The people I know of who have been or are sick are still OK and are able to recover from their homes. (*knocks on wood*) The weekends have felt safer—with the quiet and solace found in comforting activities—but the weeks are hard. Dissonance with working at what feels like 2x the pace, three hours longer per day on average, and feeling so disconnected, exhausted and overcome with grief, confusion, uncertainty.

The American Exception Zadie Smith/The New Yorker
"Death has come to America. It was always here, albeit obscured and denied, but now everybody can see it."

'I Become a Person of Suspicion' The Daily
Jiayang Fan of The New Yorker reflects on being an Asian American in this country. It was really affecting—she speaks of her experiences and memories so eloquently and thoughtfully, even when they're painful.

6 Lives Stolen On New York City's 2 Deadliest Days Somini Sengupta & Andrea Salcedo/NY Times
So much care was given to this beautifully written tribute. They honored lives that may have otherwise been overlooked and they have my infinite respect for that.

The pandemic is a portal Arundhati Roy/The Financial Times
"What is this thing that has happened to us? It’s a virus, yes. In and of itself it holds no moral brief. But it is definitely more than a virus. Some believe it’s God’s way of bringing us to our senses. Others that it’s a Chinese conspiracy to take over the world. Whatever it is, coronavirus has made the mighty kneel and brought the world to a halt like nothing else could. Our minds are still racing back and forth, longing for a return to “normality”, trying to stitch our future to our past and refusing to acknowledge the rupture. But the rupture exists. And in the midst of this terrible despair, it offers us a chance to rethink the doomsday machine we have built for ourselves. Nothing could be worse than a return to normality. Historically, pandemics have forced humans to break with the past and imagine their world anew. This one is no different. It is a portal, a gateway between one world and the next. We can choose to walk through it, dragging the carcasses of our prejudice and hatred, our avarice, our data banks and dead ideas, our dead rivers and smoky skies behind us. Or we can walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready to imagine another world. And ready to fight for it."

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