Robert Koehler writes about creative empathy in a pandemic:
As Robert Reich pointed out regarding the American public health system: “. . .we have a private for-profit system for individuals lucky enough to afford it and a rickety social insurance system for people fortunate enough to have a full-time job.
“At their best, both systems respond to the needs of individuals rather than the needs of the public as a whole. In America, the word ‘public’ — as in public health, public education or public welfare — means a sum total of individual needs, not the common good.”
But health equals wholeness. Without collective health, we have humanity shattered by greed and paranoia, that is to say, social hemorrhage, or what Randall Amster called business as usual: “The simmering cauldron of political vitriol, reifications of otherness, escalating inequality, endless war, even more endless waste, and a rapidly warming world hasn’t exactly set us in good stead to weather the storm.”