Fandango’s One Word Challenge this week is the topic of risk.
Risk taking is a major consideration these days. With a coronavirus pandemic still raging, while the federal government chooses to ignore its continuation and many states “opening” – opening beaches, restaurants, other places where people gather in close quarters. Of course, one can take precautions to avoid the risk of being infected. But what if something is too important to stay at home and do nothing? When yet another black person was unnecessarily killed by the police, people all over the world took the risk of being in close contact with others to protest. And the protests, being so large and widespread, led many cities to reexamine their police departments to initiate radical reforms. So in this case, for those thousands of protesters, the risk was worth it. We may see a spike in Covid-19 cases within the next week or so that could be traced to the protests. Some of the people who marched and carried signs, even with masks on, may have contracted the virus, and some may die.
To risk one’s life for a cause – that was the choice these past two weeks. It is not a new phenomenon: people have risked their lives for causes they believed in throughout history. Those who work as doctors or nurses in hospitals overflowing with coronavirus cases without proper PPE risk their lives at work every day. Those who hid Jews or joined the resistance movements during the Nazi era in Europe risked their lives. The men and women who fight in wars risk their lives. Those who protested the disappearance of loved ones during the dictatorships in Latin America risked their lives. Young people in China in June, 1989 risked their lives by protesting in Tiananmen Square in Beijing. Refugees risk their lives crossing borders to flee war or persecution, travel in dangerous circumstances, and when they get to what they hope is a safe haven, there is the risk they will be sent back to their countries to certain death.
Yet courageous people continue to risk their lives in some way every day.
Images downloaded from Politico: “Enough is Enough.”