Over twenty thousand people have died from coronavirus.
In the UK.
That is just the number of deaths in hospital.
It doesn’t include deaths in the community or deaths in care homes.
Globally we are looking at some two hundred thousand deaths.
I live in the beautiful city of Edinburgh where the population is just under five hundred thousand, that means that the UK death toll has wiped out the equivalent of the cities total population.
I can’t imagine what that would look like.
Fathers and mothers have lost sons and daughters.
Children have lost parents and grandparents.
Friends are grieving the passing of those they called “my best friend” because, suddenly, they realise exactly how important that was.
The world is in turmoil.
Dissenting voices talk of an over-reaction.
Conspiracy theories abound.
There is nothing unusual about that, all crisis bring such reactions.
Dissenting voices are important and I am glad they exist, it forces me to think and to research.
I won’t condemn those who say there is another way.
Free speech, free thought.
Then, just a few minutes ago, I was pointed in the direction of this statement from Morrissey;
“During this fascinating period of Big Brother conformism…otherwise known as Kung-Flu, a lot of people have adopted Everyday is Like Sunday as the summing-up of our times…The constant question I hear is “why don’t the label re-issue the song?”, and, of course, you might as well ask me why the universe is made up of matter and not antimatter. In fact THAT question is easier to answer.”
Let’s forget some of the other “controversies” around Morrissey for a moment, those arguments have been had and a general consensus has been reached with varying degrees of condemnation and acceptance from all concerned parties.
Instead let us simply take this statement on its own (de)merits.
During a global pandemic, with the POTUS suggesting people ingest bleach as a cure, with hundreds of thousands dead, with many more deaths to come, with families torn apart, with lives on hold for an indeterminate amount of time and with chaos in total control…at this time Morrissey thinks it is the right time to play fast and loose with racial stereotypes by labelling the pandemic “Kung-Flu”. That the disease began in China is a statement of fact but why does that matter? And, if indeed it did matter, why the “joke” about kung-fu? It is, at best, achingly old fashioned, the sort of thing Bobby Davro would run a mile from and, at worst, the sort of lazy racism that makes people shift uncomfortably in their seat at social gatherings when Uncle Brian says it.
But worse than that is the suggestion that when people cannot get married, when children can’t play with their friends, when parents are separated from their children, when people are losing their jobs, when NHS workers are dying, when people live in genuine fear for their lives and the lives of those they love, at a time when all of that is clear and present Morrissey wonders why his record label haven’t re-issued a record he made over thirty years ago and that anyone who wants to hear can download or stream instantly.
He wants to see death and chaos bestow a number one record upon him.
Just think about that for a second.
Have you been ill?
Have you lost someone you love?
Have you been furloughed?
Have you lost your job?
These things are of little consequence in Morrissey-land, what really matters is that he can squeeze a few pennies from people less fortunate than he and see his name at the top of the pops.
It lacks humanity.
It demonstrates the soul of a man who has lost his soul.
It is the awful stench of empathy decaying.
He should be ashamed.
But he won’t be.
Viva hate indeed.