Pom in Oz: Fearing what will come post-February 5 is normal, but it shouldn’t stop us reopening

Derek GoforthMidwest Times
WA Premier Mark McGowan wears a mask at a press conference about the government’s COVID-19 response.
Camera IconWA Premier Mark McGowan wears a mask at a press conference about the government’s COVID-19 response. Credit: Paul Kane/Getty Images

Fear can be a good thing. It can sharpen us, prepare us, it can even galvanize a community.

But sadly, more often than not, fear is a destructive, manipulative and coercive feeling. Fear can grind us down, make us turn on our friends and it can be used by those in positions of power to their own ends.

Some of us right now are in the grips of fear. In fear of a virus? Fear of a mandate? Fear of our welfare and livelihoods?

What I believe it boils down to is simply fear of the unknown, we simply just don’t know and that in and of itself is driving us to be fearful.

You see, in WA we have indeed had it good, subjectively. The economy has boomed, our health has not suffered and we should have had time to prepare.

But one thing we have not had? The virus, simple as that. We have not had any waves, we have had barely a trickle which has dried up as soon as it has begun. Sure this is a good thing on the surface, but it has not allowed us to prepare.

Shops, hospitals, schools, everyone in WA, simply just does not have any experience that we can build on.

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Have we learned anything from over east? From Europe and the USA? I hope so and I do think we have.

WA Labor and the Federal Government know what is at stake. They have assured us of a “safe” transition. Now is the time to see if they are good for it. Time will tell.

I am not afraid, I have my faith and I have my reasons for being assured. But I understand why others are fearful. I get why people simply want the borders to stay shut. But no, I think we should open — cautiously.

We need to see our loved ones, we need to complete the job market, we need to move forward.

We have interesting and troubled times ahead, but I am confident in our town, our region, our state and in our country. Not in the people in charge, but in my family, my friends, my brothers and sisters in Christ — in my fellow Aussies.

Take care, be safe and look after each other.

Derek Goforth is a teacher at Geraldton Christian College

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