Dictatorship, discrimination, threat to democracy & hellip; These accusations are heard all over the world today and are addressed to governments that are introducing increasingly stringent measures against the coronavirus epidemic. Already, not only convinced anti-vaccines, but also people who are completely loyal to both vaccination and the government in general, are beginning to wonder whether the new order violates basic human rights. To what restrictions does the state have the right to take care of the health of the population? Do bans on entry and exit, quarantine, green passport, violet standard, multi-colored bracelets and other palette of constraints and restrictions agree with democracy?
In one such international discussion, Israel was cited as an example. So, they say, the state is in a situation of constant military and terrorist threat and could initially introduce a tough political regime for security reasons. However, even in these difficult conditions, Israel remains a democracy, and others should learn from it.
Based on this thesis, Israel, which is fighting the “ crown, '' could learn from Israel, which is fighting terror. Indeed, we have not seen such measures of pressure on society even during wars and army operations. Authorities obliged homeowners to equip shelters, but no one forced people to hide in them during rocket attacks. The Logistics Service recommended, but did not require, to carry gas masks. It was understood that a person is responsible for his own life.
At the same time, Israelis are calm about those routine measures that sometimes shock and offend foreigners, & ndash; for example, checking bags at the entrance to any institution and profiling at the airport. This is probably why the authorities initially assumed that our citizens would observe quarantine in the same disciplined manner and go for vaccinations on time. But everything turned out differently. When the first fear of an unknown disease passed, the Israelis were ready to unanimously spit on all the security measures. After all, the crown does not fall on our heads with an ominous roar and does not explode on buses, so its danger seems exaggerated, and many even consider it an ordinary flu. To contain the epidemic, the state has to resort to coercion, fines, and other varieties of “ carrot, not carrot. '' And then everyone began to mourn democracy in unison.
Do anti-corruption measures really infringe on our rights? The one who neglects them, endangers not only himself, but also others & ndash; both individuals and the entire health care system and the economy. Therefore, the state has the right to intervene in such a situation. At the same time, no one deprives people of the right to demonstrate against restrictions or challenge them in court.
In fact, the alarmed public is in vain driving a wave: no violation of democracy is taking place in our country, at least at the moment. The unvaccinated are not dragged to be vaccinated by force, they are not imprisoned or fined. Unvaccinated children are not excluded from classes & ndash; with parents, the authorities generally act exclusively by persuasion. Shopping malls, gyms, theaters and other entertainment venues are not a basic human right to visit. The same can be said for traveling abroad. Those who strongly resent the quarantine introduced for those returning from abroad and the growing list of “ red countries '' can be reminded of the recent past, when new immigrants could not receive a darkon. in the first year of stay in the country. And even earlier, in the 70s, it was problematic to leave Israel at all. But no one particularly doubted the democratic character of the Jewish state.
Since then, democracy has grown, and we have become accustomed to its advantages. As we are accustomed to that the state should take care of our safety, well-being, employment, education, medicine, and so on. After all, for this we pay taxes, providing the salaries of a huge army of officials, including ministers and the head of government himself, isn't that so?
No, not so, or rather, not quite so. In a democracy, the relationship between the people and the government is built on a social contract. Our obligations under this agreement converge not only to pay taxes, but also to comply with laws and regulations. We perform most of them as usual, because they have always been. People pay the same taxes not so much out of conscientiousness as in order to avoid penalties, although no one likes it. We follow the rules of the road, turn on the headlights in winter, regularly inspect our cars, even if we think it is unnecessary. A person who does not agree with these requirements is free to walk. We do not swim for buoys, even if we know how to swim well, and we observe a lot of other inconvenient rules, and when we break them, we realize that this may be punished. As for freedom of movement, that is, countries that Israelis are forbidden to visit without any connection with the “ crown '', and for this you can go not to a seven-day quarantine, but to jail, for a real period.
All this in no way contradicts democracy and is caused not by the arbitrariness of the authorities, but by concern for the welfare of society. The distinction of “ crown '' prohibitions and restrictions are only in the fact that they have appeared recently and have not yet become a daily routine. If we imagine that we will have to live with masks and a 'green passport' constantly, then in a couple of years it will not cause any questions or protest. We will begin to calmly reach out for colored bracelets, as we open our bags at the entrance to a supermarket today.
Another point is that we do not fully believe whether the government cares about us and not about itself and does it know what it is doing. But this, again, is a matter of the competence of the authorities, and not of democratic principles. Let's choose a government that will fight the 'crown' otherwise or whom we will trust more. Nobody took this right of choice away from us.
Author //: Irina Petrova