Once Upon A Time: There Was Coronavirus – OpEd


The day when we will share a story will not be far away: once upon a time there was. Once upon a time there was a coronavirus. Everyone went crazy over this virus. For a moment, all differences that had failed to extinguish the centuries, the upheavals, the revolutions, the great struggles were extinguished. Religious, racial, ethnic, wealth differences, social diversity, and cultural differences were extinguished. Everything was turned upside down. All mankind was threatened by an invisible and unknown ‘enemy’.

Powerful states, large armies, deadly weapons of war, endless riches, sophisticated technology and technology of information, strategies, and tactics of great wars; they all surrendered to a micro-coronavirus.

Thus, for a moment, all those who had never been close to each other came together. Even those who hated each other, joined forces together, they even had fought with all their might against each other, earlier.

For a moment it was the powerlessness towards preventing death that was uniting everyone. It was the desire to live that was put above all else. There was a revolution in social relations and realm of interhuman relations. In an instant the people became indifferent to the globalist citizen. Human society has become a single internationally infected society. The world was transformed into a quarantined global village.

For a moment, everyone was waiting for a solution from each other, transferring responsibilities to each other, being afraid of each other, distancing themselves from each other, nations insulting and blaming each other. Coronavirus had taken everyone out of tact. Then when they all had to act, they were all paralyzed. People were waiting for doctors. Doctors expected novel practices from science. Science expected from politics. Politics expected from people. People expected from God.

For a moment everyone was closed physically. But all opened up virtually. All without physical contact, but all with electronic connections. Entire companies disappeared, to be replaced by social media networks.

In an instant everything powerful faded away. Every investment over the centuries has become ridiculous. Every former major goal was desecrated without any value. Over the centuries, were created weapons, armaments, and armies. It was an investment in death. This was a forgetfulness of life.

Over the decades, endless capital had been poured into achieving the unattainable. But these capitals did not understand, they could not prevent a coronavirus in the heart of the earth, during humanity, among human beings.

For a moment everything seemed to turn upside down. Efforts have been made over the years to demolish borders, walls, and fences. It had become useless for the free movement of people, goods, services, and capital. Opposite a coronavirus, the demons of the past rose. Borders were closed, walls were erected, fences were built.

For a moment, the gigantic infrastructure of many centuries seemed worthless. Roads became impassable checkpoints. Railroads began to rust from silence. The planes landed like helpless birds eager to fly. Everything was dragging on. Mankind was moving like a reptile of prehistory. For a moment people forgot about themselves, what they know and what they need to do. Politicians became doctors. Doctors became politicians. And then, both sides became economists. They forgot what they know best. They ignored what they had to do.

In one instant the closure produced the opening. Silence produced the expression. The screens start to crack on micro-screens with dozens of portraits. Physically separated but joined on a screen. They had never spoken individually before, and now they were all talking virtually at once.

In an instant, powerful people became weak and ridiculous. At the same time, weak and forgotten people were greatly exalted. The former heroes were repulsed. Those that were retreated over the decades became heroes.

For a moment, the world was finding what it deserved. Mankind was deserving of what it had sought. For thousands of years, every effort has been made to remove human life from the world agenda. And when human life was threatened by a coronavirus, the entire international agenda that was built and continued over the centuries did collapse.

The moment was coming when the coronavirus, as it came slowly and without appearing, started to leave slowly but without any certain feeling …. But the world remained where it had been. People would go on with life as before.

What will be the moral of this tale of the past?! How will the world be after that? How will humanity rise after such a bad dream? What will follow and what will change in the human mind?! What will change in the individual, the family, the community, the nations and the relations and the international system?! What lessons will become unforgettable to all?!

It is difficult for these questions to be answered now. But something can be said even now … The world after this deadly nightmare will appreciate man and humanity above all else. Mankind will think more to fight death and cultivate life.

After that, people will be more friendly with the land, nature, global climate. The earth will be more generous with man and human life.  Science will land more on the ground. It will penetrate deeper into human life and the secrets of life and tackle the challenges of death.

Public policies of any level will be more humane within themselves. Their humanity will be guided more by rationality. Rationality will be at the core of everything, family, society, nations, and the entire international system.

Egoism, community individualism, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic and state will be shaken as never before to be replaced as never before with a sense of solidarity beyond borders, races, economic levels, and social representation. The machinations of autocratic, authoritarian, kleptocratic power will be exposed to the values of democracy, by the people, with the people and for the people.

Human freedoms will be more closely linked and conditioned, where freedom of life will be nurtured by other freedoms, and all together will better serve man and humanity. The international system will further weaken the monsters of geopolitical interests in the face of the monolith of international values, principles and norms with peoples and individuals at its center.

The divisive race for power, capital, control of one or of a group of powerful people over the world and humanity will be weakened in the face of the need for more peace, security, freedom, democracy and prosperity for all. The day will not be far away when we all will confess it was as it was for us … it was once an invisible deadly ‘enemy’! Everyone felt threatened by him.

The virus eventually fled, taking many lives. Coronavirus departed leaving a lot of scars on humanity. Above all, COVID-19 left us with many lessons not to be forgotten, the need for more humanness, rationality, solidarity, peace and freedom, democracy and individual freedom, prosperity for all and eternity. 

This essay was translated from Albanian Language by: Peter M. Tase

* Prof. Dr. LISEN BASHKURTI is the Dean of the Faculty of Law and Social Sciences, Epoka University, Tirana – ALBANIA. 

Dr. Lisen Bashkurti

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Lisen Bashkurti is the Dean of the Faculty of Law and Social Sciences (FLSS), Epoka University, Tirana, Albania. In 1992-1993, Bashkurti was the ambassador of Albania to the Republic of Hungary.

One thought on “Once Upon A Time: There Was Coronavirus – OpEd

  • May 19, 2020 at 10:51 pm

    Phenomenal writing!


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