Point of View

Lockdown: Can you eat your cake and have it too?


One of the first laws taught to the students of logic is called the Principle of Non-Contradiction (PNC). Like most of the modern knowledge that came out from the Greek Wisdom, PNC also has its roots in Greek thought. It was in fact Aristotle who first put forth this idea in ‘Metaphysics’. According to the principle the statements ‘A is B’ and ‘A is not B’ cannot both be true at the same time. This simple rule of logic is defied, dismantled and dashed to fragments by the Federal Government and most notably the Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan. There is a lockdown in the country and there is no lockdown in the country, both statements are true.

Pakistan is doomed to have a government that can defy plain logic and simple reasoning to make decisions that could be disastrous. The Prime Minister was never in favor of a complete lockdown but somehow all federating units, including those where PTI is in power, opted for the lockdown while Sindh did its utmost to keep people at home.

Prime Minister’s logic defying thinking also states that lockdown will kill a large number of wage earners who work daily to provide for their families. Coronavirus is not an ordinary contagious disease. The virus as we have been repeatedly saying is a global pandemic that has killed over hundred thousand people around the world. When you are faced with a life threatening virus, the first response is to save lives. Take for example the case of a house on fire. The people living in that house will never try to save the valuables thinking of tomorrow or the day after, rather they will instinctively rush out of that house to save themselves. It’s not a matter of choice or what will happen tomorrow, it’s all about how to save yourself today.

There is a long list of small businesses that are now operational in the country. If a barber can manage to make a haircut six feet away from the customer than all of us can go out and perform our duties. If tailors are allowed to work than the related cloth market needs to open. If carpenters are working then it is assumed that the wood business associated with it will be operational too. Likewise, the electricians will need the hardware stores open to get on with their jobs.

Lockdown is a must to contain coronavirus.

The central government led by Captain Khan is still in confusion as to how to go about the crisis. After failing to utilize the state machinery at his disposal Mr PM could not resist falling in the lap of IMF once again for the bailout. No doubt there are two crisis, COVID-19 and the economic crisis. It is not possible to ignore the first and focus on the second. In order to put the economy on track every country needs to fix the Corona problem first and right now lockdown is the only solution possible. The Prime Minister needs to realize that he cannot eat the cake and have it. Either go for the lockdown or open everything while taking full responsibility of what happens next.