Name and Shame?

We are sitting here in the western zone of Nova Scotia’s health districts and praying that the resurgence of COVID-19 somehow miraculously eludes us. Wouldn’t that be nice for us, but does little to help our sisters and brothers in the HRM, or across our country and the world. As is so often the case when things go wrong, we look for someone or something to blame.

Right now, there’s a loud call to ‘name and shame’ those who broke the rules and perhaps, just perhaps, led to our current plight of increasing COVID-19 cases. Truthfully, I might feel the allure of that myself. If those responsible don’t care about others, focused solely on their own desires, maybe naming, shaming, and fining them will be a deterrent. After all, they don’t care about us so why should we worry about them?

However, we are Nova Scotians, we are Canadians, we are part of the world humanity who do put others ahead of ourselves. We are willing to make personal sacrifices for the betterment of the greater community. To ‘name and shame’ runs contrary to putting others ahead of ourselves. And yes, even if those ‘others’ don’t care about us. To ‘name and shame’ is to lower ourselves to their level. And we are better than that.

The students who embarrassed their school and their province with their party and subsequent selfie mocking their fines, they will one day look back with embarrassment once their self entitlement has been realized. They don’t need to know that we made that journey to realization harder. Stay strong!

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