As I shared last Sunday, there are times when the preacher loses control of his talk, not unlike a wild horse taking the bit in their teeth, hellbent to go where they will. Last week was a wild ride like that. While surprised to have my intended journey interrupted I was not unhappy where my musings took me. I saw some unexpected sights. Even so, I am going to try again to reach my intended destination.
Like many of us I have spent considerable time thinking about how Covid has changed the future both in the short term and for the long term. I don’t have a crystal ball for this task. And if I did, this being 2020, it would malfunction: Filling with smoke before rolling to the floor and smashing into smithereens. What I do have is current events and, more importantly, history to offer insights.
I find myself feeling a little more at peace this morning. We have once again eliminated Covid 19 from the community. And the election season that felt like it would never end is now over for another three years. Perhaps now life can go back to the way it was, a 2019 normal. Phew! I wasn’t sure how much more I could take, for neither pandemics nor elections necessarily bring out our better angels.
But who am I kidding? We will never turn back the calendar. The way it was has been irretrievably interrupted by a plague of biblical proportions. How will it play out? It is a question that has been explored as long as there have been pandemics.
New Zealand has a very strong right-to-die movement and polls suggest that at least 60% of us support voluntary euthanasia.
However, the minority is equally passionate in their opposition. From the perspective of a politician, supporting the right to die with dignity is a no-win situation. This issue has been avoided for twenty-five years since a bill presented in 1995 was soundly defeated. This election the issue is before us again as a binding referendum.
Compared to what is going on in the US, our election season is not filled with much drama or suspense. Thank you, Spirit of Life! Polls suggest that the current government will get another term. The only question is will Labour be able to govern alone or will they need a coalition partner. What suspense there is surrounds the two referendums on the ballot. Considering that each has the potential to be transformational, they have not had nearly the air time of the political decisions most Kiwis seem to have already made.
For the past couple of years, I’ve been involved with the West Auckland Women’s Interfaith initiative… this began in the wake of the Christchurch Mosque shootings as a way to break down the barriers of fear between People of different faiths, to form interfaith friendships, where we could realise our essential unity as a human family, despite our differences of belief, ritual, and culture. Visiting some of the women in their various congregations, and I had some surprising adventures.