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  • Writer's picturePeter Humphris

Face covering is now normal, but what does it mean?

I’m staying at a friend’s apartment in Sydney for a week of the school holidays, it’s a small two bedroom apartment in a block about 10 stories high.

One week’s rent for the apartment is more than a full year’s school fees for Abashake!

Two weeks rent is more than the average cost of food/housing/clothing, in fact all living costs for one of our children for a year.

There is an amazing gap between rich and poor, and “rich” is very much the norm for us Australians. Most of us think ‘others” are rich, but it is confronting to discover we are part of the richest 1%.

According to the Credit Suisse Global Wealth Report, the world's richest 1 percent own 44 percent of the world's wealth. Their data also shows that adults with less than $10,000 in wealth make up 56.6 percent of the world's population but hold less than 2 percent of global wealth.

During the Covid-19 global “pause” we have had some time to think and have been forced to change our routines, and in many cases the expectations we had for 2020 and beyond.

We might be pondering a future that has more unknowns, and so also a new direction, a new set of priorities.

I have no illusions about closing the gap between rich and poor, that ‘communist’ ideal runs into the reality that we are all different, we are not destined for EQUALITY, but we should be seeking EQUITY.

So, as we plan our new post-Covid future we might focus on building bridges across that ever-widening Gap.

Building bridges across the gap between rich and poor is something we can all take part in, and we need to build them before the rich destroy themselves and suffocate in their greed.

Climate change is a great reminder that we are in this endeavour together, regardless of the gap.

Now Covid-19 tells us that we can touch and spread and give across every divide, be it gap, border, wall, or any other line of difference.

Covid -19 has given us another metaphor to consider, are we covering our faces for protection or symbolically are we being forced to cover our faces in shame.

To remove the masks, we’ll need to embrace a new ‘normal’, a more compassionate outlook that seeks to give more than it takes, a life lived not seeking equality, not wanting sameness, but rather a life that seeks to infect others with the abundance we have.

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