Mask politics and contrasting conceptions of freedom

As tensions rise across the world over governments’ differing approaches to dealing with COVID-19, the author argues that cultural differences between Western and Asian societies could explain the contrast in their reactions over mask policies. She proposes that individuals in the West should take this as an opportunity to remember that “a functional nation requires individual sacrifice” and Westerners should work to “rebuild our sense of community before we are required to make even larger sacrifices for it in the future.”

‘Love in the time of COVID’ – How Nicaragua is attempting to hide the virus rather than treat it

In Nicaragua, ‘express burials’ where the fallen victims of COVID-19 are buried as soon as possible, often in the middle of the night, with no filming allowed and only a small number of family members able to attend, are common practice as part of President Daniel Ortega’s bid to downplay the severity of the virus. The author explores the situation in one of Central America’s worst performing economies and whether the handling of the COVID crisis could be a catalyst for widespread political change in the country.