EDITORIAL | Pandemic, parties, politicking

Government officials are now bracing for a possible surge in coronavirus infections during the holiday season.

In various statements, officials have assured the public that there are contingency plans in the event of a surge.

Reminders on safety protocols continue to be issued left and right.

Most of these, however, fall on deaf ears, as excited shoppers flock to malls and other commercial establishments to avail of huge price drops or other holiday promos. Meantime, others insist on holding parties, reunions, and gatherings.

Some are so adamant to ignore the government's health protocols that they need to be reminded, quite plainly to the point of insult, that the virus does not go on holiday.

Then again, it is quite difficult to convince regular people to follow the safety measures, when it is the leaders themselves who are creating arguably irresistible opportunities to congregate.

Some local government units, for example, are distributing Christmas gift packs to constituents in public, sometimes even in cramped and enclosed places. And with so much of the attention on the packs of Noche Buena goodies, there is little regard for social distancing, proper mask-wearing, or other health measures.

There is a safer alternative, of course--to deliver the gift packs right to the beneficiaries' homes. No gatherings, no fanfare, just like when the aid was distributed during the start of the lockdown.

But then, how would these leaders be able to use these gatherings for personal ends? How would they be able to remind the voters that, like the virus, they are not taking the holidays off?

The politicking continues even amid a pandemic.