As the countries of Europe have been placing restrictions on flights from and to South Africa one after the other, the World Health Organization has been calling on countries to not impose hasty measures connected to the new Covid-19 variant known as the “Botswana mutation.”

“It will take a few weeks to fully understand the impact of the new SARS-COV-2 variant. Researchers are hard at work trying to understand how transmissible it is and how it will respond to vaccines and medicines,” stated a representative of the WHO. 

Earlier, German Minister of Health Jens Spahn warned that only a rapid decrease in social contact could stop the ongoing fourth wave of the virus in his country. 

“The situation is as dramatic as it has ever been during this pandemic,” he highlighted.

A first reading of this aforementioned sequence of events can be summed up in one word: chaos. International chaos. Conflicting statements, initiatives that illustrate that the, mostly, unknown nature of the pandemic breeds confusion and panic. The safest move, combined with the vaccine, is to “slam on the brakes,” as Spahn suggested.

These unrelenting blows triggered by the pandemic over the last two years have depleted, apart from everything else, our mental fortitude. The constant pace of “new information” is giving the mutations a run for their money – apart from fatigue, unreliability, and stress, it does not seem to offer anything positive. Quite the opposite, it fosters and feeds the paranoia of all sorts of deniers. 

The data is changing at an unprecedented rate for all of humanity and the only defense we have is vaccinations, masks and distancing. It takes time for the scientists to understand it. This might be the most difficult aspect, as it is an internal task that requires self-discipline. Understanding is neither offered nor bought.

However, it is not a profound, theoretical procedure. It is also dictated by the attitude adopted by institutions and politicians. The “terrifying dead-ends” that the opposition wearingly regurgitates and levels at the government offer absolutely nothing. Not even a small number of votes, as the polls demonstrate. 

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