The social community in Lebanon has noted the dire irresponsibility of some of the country’s cafes, restaurants, bars, and nightclubs in the face of the coronavirus.
As Lebanon heads into a 25-day lockdown, it’s understandable that businesses want to make their last bit of profit before closing down completely. Surely, businesses across the globe have been hit by the pandemic.
However, throwing a “pre-lockdown” party is not the answer and is taking it too far, considering that the virus doesn’t take a break to wait for people to go on lockdown.
The pandemic situation in the country is far out of reachable control. There is a desperate search for hospital beds for severe cases. Additionally, Lebanon just registered its highest daily record to date, exceeding 4,000 positive cases.
Dr. Firass Abiad, head of Lebanon’s main coronavirus medical facility, Rafik Hariri University Hospital (RHUH), only expects the situation to get worse after more than 30% of PCR tests conducted on Tuesday came back positive.
Announcements of these ‘pre-lockdown events’ were many on social media, and so were the backlashes of conscious citizens, which compelled some of these venues, such as Blue Waves and MOON The Club, to cancel their events.
However, others are turning a deaf ear and are still planning to put people’s lives at risk for one last night, although one single party night can be enough to infect many. That has been evident with the surge of infectious after people threw New Year’s Eve parties across the country.
These irresponsible behaviors don’t just stem from the eagerness of the Lebanese to live to the fullest or them avoiding to face the reality. Misinformation and conflicting information have been many across social media.
Social influencers, like some celebrities for example, with so little understanding of the virus, have spread false information, whether it be anti-vaxxing posts and conspiracy theories, or singing to their audience about how face masks don’t protect from the virus and that only saints do.
Just this week, Lebanese singer Assi El-Hallani was fined 300,000,000 LBP for performing live to hundreds of people on New Year’s Eve. The Hilton Beirut Habtoor Grand Hotel that hosted the event was also fined.
However, people had already mingled with the dozens of affected cases that were detected soon after the event.
It is certainly expected from the Lebanese authorities to not only clamp down on such events and the publicly announced pre-lockdown parties but to prevent them from taking place altogether.
That being said, violating the new lockdown could now end up with jail-time.
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