Just stay in. Is that so hard?

This is clearly a time of reflection. It is time when you catch up with your past, present and future.

No doubt these are also worrying times especially when you do not know exactly when to expect an end to all this misery brought about by Covid-19.

There will be indications that we have gone past the crucial stage as and when the curve flattens. For this to happen, the masses must do their part by strictly observing the rule of law and the conditions attached to the movement control order (MCO).

Covid-19 does not discriminate. It does not see the difference between the young and old, the rich and the poor or the common man on the street and our policymakers. It cuts across all borders – race, religion and creed.

It cannot and does not differentiate between 24 seminarians playing football in a private field, or those who insist on jogging in public. Both go against the rule of social distancing and the cause and effect of such actions. There is contact. Make no mistake about that.

Opinions are divided as to whether or not people who deliberately go against the MCO ought to be brought before a magistrate in handcuffs like criminals. Perhaps the more pertinent question to ask is this – why go against the law of the land when there is no need to? Sure you can try and justify your actions by saying one thing or the other. But why defy the rule of law?

There are also those who question the authorities for their actions and the way such offenders are brought to court. It is their right to express their thoughts on such a manner of treatment.

For those who are infected or affected by Covid-19, they, their relatives and friends also have a right to question when will people learn to be considerate of others?

You know very well that the country is fighting an invisible enemy and the virus is spreading like nobody’s business. Shouldn’t you do your part as a responsible citizen by observing the law for now? Can you not put off gatherings for the time being, be it in a place of worship, a playground or a playing field?

What harm will that do, compared to the harm you could possibly do to others by your actions? If you don’t want to be humiliated with handcuffs or other types of punishment, then do as you are told. Take the advice of the prime minister when he tells you to “Just stay put and stay home”. Why is it so hard to do that?

If everybody started defying the law by saying things like “I am jogging alone” or “this is a private playground or field and therefore I should not be brought to court”, what is the point of an MCO?

For the good of everyone, just bear with it for the next month or so. That is how you show a caring attitude and love for your fellow men. Think of others and nobody can find fault with you. What our nation needs at this moment is our understanding and cooperation. That is all.

When disasters like this strike, you find the best and worst in people. The award for the best in people must surely go to our frontliners for opening up to what could befall them.

They work round the clock and people like Health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah is the living example of this. His daily briefing is something I look forward to. In fact, his assurance and the manner in which he presents his facts is, in my opinion, far more convincing than that of our health minister.

This is not just a fight conducted by the frontliners. This is a fight for the whole country. So let’s just do our part.

Clement Stanley is an FMT reader.

The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of FMT.