There are some silver linings to the COVID cloud

Weyburn This Week editorial

People may well wonder if anything good or worthwhile will come out of this time of lockdown and restrictions under the COVID-19 pandemic.

In most every way, this has been historically unprecedented for this generation in its worldwide scope and impact, with every aspect of daily life impacted for every resident, young and old.

article continues below

Some people want to look back a century at the Spanish flu pandemic, but there are many, many aspects of the COVID-19 situation that make it completely unique in history.

One benefit that cannot be overlooked is the availability and use of new technology in a way that is helping all of us cope with life under a pandemic, and the opportunities afforded by that technology.

For example, the prevalence of smart phones, tablets and computers means that people are able to stay in touch to an extent, in spite of the rules of physical distancing and self-isolation, and the lockdown of the past two months which are now starting to relax somewhat.

For those who love music, for example, the technology available today through such platforms as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Webex and other similar applications have allowed live music performances that can be viewed throughout the community, the country and indeed around the world.

Not only do musicians and singers perform on the balconies of Italy, but some of these performers link up with other performers in other cities or countries and provide live music anyone can listen to. The opportunity for this would never have arisen were it not for COVID, and now that music lovers have had a taste of these live performances, it may well stay with us as a legacy of what otherwise was an awful situation under the pandemic.

The technology has allowed many of our councils, boards, organizations and committees to continue meeting and share ideas or concerns, stories, advice or just face-to-face visiting. Without the tech abilities, the lockdowns would have meant none of these groups or organizations could have continued, other than through a conference call or something similar.

Another benefit, hopefully, is that people have regained an appreciation for other people. There are some who have challenges with being social, and this situation has been somewhat of a blessing as they can keep contact with others but in a virtual way, not in person and face-to-face.

To be sure, there are negative aspects of the pandemic lockdowns, but as the restrictions are gradually loosened and we are able to eventually have a “normal” life again, may some of the positives stay with us and help make our lives better for it.