The Indian Railways has ground to a halt. The streets are deserted. Shops are closed. People are in their homes, too scared to come out. India fears the fate of Europe, where nearly 1500 people died from the Wuhan Coronavirus yesterday. In the US, tens of thousands of people are already affected.
Why did this happen? Why has civilization stopped suddenly? Why are we in this crisis?
This happened because the Communist Party of China, which runs a totalitarian regime, refused to warn the world in time. They suppressed the news, destroyed samples, allowed millions of people to leave Wuhan and go all around the world.
Communists have always been against freedom. At least for the moment, they appear to have succeeded spectacularly. For now, we are all in jail.
But there is a second battle brewing, one which the Communist Party is also trying to win. They are trying to show the world that only their method works. That only a totalitarian Communist government can implement the kind of harsh curbs that are needed to stop a pandemic.
Already, the effect has been felt across the free world. From the United States to India, people are beginning to look at their democracies and wonder if it is a kind of weakness. The governments of Spain, France or Italy cannot force people to lock down in the way the Chinese state can. Left to their own judgement, people will make foolish mistakes. In a pandemic, the mistakes of a reckless few can doom us all. Perhaps freedom and democracy is not such a big deal after all?
When people begin to question the value of liberty itself, you know the Communists are winning. We cannot afford that.
This is why a concept such as “Janata curfew” is so important. The government isn’t forcing us. It is appealing to our conscience, our intelligence and our sense of duty. Saying that a free society can be trusted to do the right thing.
In India, left liberal sympathizers of the Communist Party have been mocking us, especially the appeal to come out of our homes at 5 pm and applaud those at the forefront of fighting the virus. They say that clapping won’t stop the virus.
We know it won’t. But we are demonstrating something even more important. We are showing them that free people can be trusted to do the right thing. A democratic country can pull together and fight a pandemic. We can save our lives and our way of life.
We have already lost our physical liberty to this virus. Now the Communists are making us question the liberty of our thoughts and our minds. If we start losing that, we would have nothing left.
We have to stay separate right now, but in our minds we are all in this together. Humanity will survive and so will freedom.