Tuesday, May 24

Corona management has become hopeless

  • Julie Wilhelmsen

    Professional mother of five

The government presented new, intrusive measures on 13 December. “Everyone I have talked to so far in 2022, thinks this latest shutdown is starting to become unreasonable and destructive,” writes Julie Wilhelmsen.

Now the time has come. The average person must be allowed to take part in assessing what is dangerous – for himself and for us as a society.

This is a chronicle. Opinions in the text are at the writer’s expense.

Our society already had a somewhat excessive attention to health and physical safety when the corona hit us. Such societal tendencies are not given quantities, but a product of human interaction and definition.

Basically, people are quite free to define what is most important in life.

But we are all closely woven together in a community of opinion where it becomes both tiring and wrong to constantly break with the social trend. In addition, we reportedly live in a knowledge society and must accept that our assessment is often not as good as that of the experts.

Loss of sight

Social narrowing and unification are gaining momentum when something is raised as an existential threat to all of us, especially if it happens from the top authority. Other considerations are pushed aside, the population must accept a kind of state of emergency.

We have been in this process, on and off, since the coronavirus became this something. And once something is lifted up as an existential threat, it is difficult to take the show down again. The focus, the language and the thought paths, the structures that create society, have changed and have created a kind of new normal.

The actors who manage the knowledge about the threat have been empowered. At the same time, one loses sight of the other threats. The knowledge about them is not as relevant.

The time has come

But now the time has come. The threat of the corona must be put into perspective, and ordinary people must be allowed to participate in assessing what is dangerous, for themselves and for us as a society.

This is not just about the well – being of the people, but also about the legitimacy of the authorities.

On the radio, there is constant talk that we do not quite know how dangerous omikron is, and Norway operates primarily among the precautionary strategists. The talk about the potential danger of the coronavirus has been heard by most people, and we have been willing to give up our own priorities and suffer other types of loss of life to combat this threat.

Now I do not think it is obvious anymore.

Loss of vital context

As a mother of five and a working 52-year-old, routine is my lifeline. I can wake up with fear of chaos.

Life only comes into place when I get up, cycle to work, see a colleague’s happy face and sit at the desk, preferably the same.

As a mother of five and a working 52-year-old, routine is my lifeline.

I rest in this year’s cycle, with holidays, work, weekends and holidays. As I get older, I see that life becomes good from being in the phase of the life cycle I am actually in, doing what is expected in this phase, interacting with those who have become “mine”.

The predictable context of daily life seems to be even more significant for the three teenagers I share a house with. At the same time, their context is hit even harder by the corona measures.

Not only school, but also training, activities and all kinds of social meetings have had to give way. Constantly new, essential parts of the structure they are to build around life seem to be gone.

As a mother, I wonder what happens to the outer frame that should carry when the teenagers finally (!) Wake up.

Apparently confused

Admittedly, the context came back abruptly when Norway was reopened. It felt dear and vulnerable. But this was only a stacked moment.

The context we got could just as easily be removed again. At the beginning of 2022, the youth’s confusion is palpable.

This, the psychologist can state, is quite predictable. The context creates not only security, but also joy and well-being. Yes, even our memory depends on it.

One should therefore not shy away from the fact that the context has been taken from us. We want it back.

The insignificance of our work

In addition, everyone, adults and young people, has now received repeated signals that the work they are doing or are going to do in their lives is really insignificant. I have recovered from both concussions and burnout in the belief that what I was doing at work was important and meaningful.

When the news came of a new shutdown in December, I got the feeling that the work I strive for every day is not really that important. This feeling of insignificance must be even more intrusive for occupational groups who have not been able to do their job at all.

When the government introduced a national liquor ban on 13 December, many were forced to close, including the Sir Winston pub in Karl Johans gate.

Again, I think with special concern about the generation that will shape the future. For young people who go to school, or students who have finally managed to choose a subject, the message is that their efforts are indispensable to society.

Can we afford to keep sending this message? What does it do with motivation and creativity?


At the same time, it is as if we have lost the right to prioritize ourselves.

Some may have felt that going to the temple to worship their Creator was the most important thing in life.

Others that saying goodbye to people you have been close to, on the deathbed or through the funeral, was life itself.

Still others will think that meeting out to have a beer with friends makes life worth living.

For a long time, we have let the corona threat and the authorities’ handling of it define what is most important in life. How long is it until we regain the right to prioritize between different loss of life?

Most comfortable

For this can not be a persistent condition. Not only because it involves a kind of disenfranchisement of the population politicians should not get used to, but also because it turns out that we, the population, are a little too unwilling to be of age.

We find it most comfortable that others prioritize. We do not have the strength to think through, much less express ourselves, about what kind of life society should protect.

Since I am researching politics and society, I will end with a warning as an expert.

Everyone I’ve talked to so far in 2022, thinks this latest shutdown is starting to get unreasonable and destructive. But there are few who want to carry the criticism.

May weather

I have given an incomplete list of loss of life in the shadow of the corona and am, like others, unable to calculate such losses against each other.

Nevertheless, we have reached a point now where it must be taken into account that the risks associated with this virus have changed significantly (according to experts), while the extent of loss of other vital qualities is completely confusing.

The Norwegian authorities must understand that there may be a great deal of risk associated with continuing the closure.

Since I am researching politics and society, I will end with a warning as an expert. The trust the Norwegian people have shown the authorities through volunteering in the last two years is not a given either. It can weather.

The trust society is Norway’s real gold. We will need it if we were to face a greater threat than the omikron in 2022.


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