Post # 476    ANT COLONIES (A pliny Editorial)

The international scene is once more astir, in its, all too familiar, panic mode, over the sudden advent of a virus, whose name we choose to simplify, as the “corona virus,”; a gift from China, (inarguably, less appreciated than dim-sum.) The disease, capable of being transmitted from person to person, and in various other ways, all of which, reportedly, are not yet understood, bears a potential impact, ranging from extremely mild, or possibly, even, unremarked, to life threatening. The public has been literally blitzed, with the customary advice, such as, the washing of hands, coughing into one’s elbow, staying home when ill, and other such, basic, non-esoteric cautions, evidently, manifesting to us, an insufficient knowledge of the new malady.

The world is not unfamiliar with such alarming, medical events. In the still, relatively young, 21St Century, we have had the good fortune to be challenged by Ebola, H1N1 Influenza, SARS, Bovine Flu, as well as other, potentially, existentially, dangerous pathologies.

While we can credit mankind, for scientific-medical advances, leading to the elimination of certain ominous diseases such as, diphtheria, polio, mumps and (when inoculated), measles, and of the accomplishment of creditable advances in the world of disease prevention, by genetic sequencing, the repetitive occurrence of “hand-tied, ” and panicked, government policy in times of a public outbreak of disease, is a clear indication of our Nation’s misplaced priorities, and its lack of the informed perspective, necessary for responsible governance.

In a great many of our mini-essays, we have extolled the generosity of Natural Evolution, in its eventual granting, to homo sapiens, of an advanced brain, possessing virtually, unlimited capabilities. The advance of mankind from the Stone Age axe, to the age of medical MRI’s and electroencephalograms, has been admirable; however, man’s mechanical and scientific advances, while positive, have unfortunately, been dilatory in their, ultimate arrival, since they, generally have been relegated to a lower level of priority, than would properly, be morally and ethically appropriate.

At times, such as the present, we are accustomed to wonder as to what man has essentially accomplished, for the most part, with the gifted capability of such a marvelous brain. We have noted, with great chagrin, that man has not, applied sufficient of his potential efforts to the cause of the betterment of his species. Instead, mankind, has, generally and neurotically, developed an ego-centric and selfish, perception of self, in relation to his time-constricted life. By virtue of this insecure and immaturely selfish, vision of his lifetime on the planet, man has valued quick acquisition, rather than patient understanding, and has prized, power and authority, over peace. He has, disappointingly, evidenced reductive, egoistic and ignorant apprehensions, concerning the relation of himself to the general humankind. As a result, we have seen xenophobia, religious excess, conflict, and bigotry, rather than, brotherhood, rational thought and universal, brotherly, acceptance.

The misuse of priorities, and the skewed, egotistical persona of mankind, has, ultimately led to a world, preoccupied with conflict and war, as opposed to one, whose population is engaged in advancements in the depth of understanding of life. History does show advancement, in large part, technical and mechanical, but shamefully, a paltry amount, in the area of secular empathy or morality. We have, in general, neurotically and fearfully, defined the attainment of security, in terms of the ever increasing. production of instruments of warfare, atomic missiles, advanced submarines, rocketry and the like. We are unashamedly, prepared to engage in war with other members of mankind, in the same fashion as those, observed, death-dealing, warring colonies of ants. We have become more preoccupied, it seems, in the consideration of horrific dangers of our own volition, than those of unforeseen threats, of the advent, of deadly disease.

This misplacement of priorities, is clearly manifested, by the government’s irrational, adamant, denial of scientifically proven, man- caused, climate change, by its limited funding of science, inclusive of, virology, our present concern, of adequate medical research and development, and morally. as well, in mitigating hunger and want, improving third world health and sanitation.  Such misplaced priorities, lead, ineluctably, to pandemics, and shortness of life. It is, indeed, a frustrating exercise, to attempt to elicit, even a modicum of sanity in man’s contemporaneous challenges, to his own life.

Rather than the perpetuation of a profitless continuance, and of an overweening, misguided, and paranoiac concern regarding sufficient, military preparedness, [which analogizes us to the insect world, of mindless, warring ant colonies] we should rationally, re-evaluate our priorities and resources, regarding education, generally and medical science, specifically, to, include adequate research into virology and other, empirically, presenting health issues.


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Retired from the practice of law'; former Editor in Chief of Law Review; Phi Beta Kappa; Poet. Essayist Literature Student and enthusiast.

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