Category Archives: Politics

Op-Ed Majalah Mother Jones: Covid “Endemik” Bukan Berarti Ringan

Covid “Endemik” Bukan Berarti Ringan

Bagaimana ungkapan ilmiah itu menutupi pilihan politik.

KIERA BUTLER 31 MARET 2022

Coronavirus adalah topik berita yang berkembang pesat, sehingga beberapa konten dalam artikel ini mungkin sudah ketinggalan zaman. Lihat liputan terbaru kami tentang krisis virus corona, dan berlangganan buletin Mother Jones Daily.

Musim gugur yang lalu, akhir pandemi tampak sangat dekat. Setelah gelombang Delta mereda, bisnis mulai melonggarkan kebijakan masker mereka. Kebanyakan orang Amerika setidaknya telah menerima satu vaksin. Publik membeli tiket pesawat untuk perjalanan liburan. Tulisan di Wall Street Journal, oleh spesialis penyakit menular University of California, San Francisco, Monica Gandhi menyatakan, “Covid-19 akan segera menjadi endemik—dan semakin cepat semakin baik.” Begitu keadaan endemisitas yang didambakan ini terjadi, tulis Gandhi, kita semua dapat mengharapkan “kembali normal sepenuhnya.”

Sejak itu, para politisi semakin sering menggunakan kata “endemik” dan “normal” secara bergantian. Pada bulan November, ketika Tennessee mengakhiri keadaan daruratnya, para politisi menjelaskan transisi sebagai tanggapan ketika “virus menjadi endemik.” Gubernur California Gavin Newsom menggambarkan pedoman yang lebih longgar yang diluncurkannya pada Februari 2022 sebagai tanggapan terhadap virus “endemik”. Setelah dua tahun bermasker, tes, dan berkelahi dengan teman dan keluarga atas tingkat kewaspadaan Covid yang berbeda, banyak orang tampaknya dengan santai mendengar apa yang mereka inginkan dalam istilah: Endemik berarti akhirnya pandemi.

Tetapi ilmu itu sendiri tidak sesederhana itu. Dalam artikel opini bulan Januari untuk jurnal bertajuk Nature, Aris Katzourakis, ahli virologi evolusioner di Universitas Oxford, menjelaskan bahwa “endemik” memiliki arti yang tepat bagi ahli epidemiologi: Suatu penyakit mencapai keadaan endemik ketika “proporsi orang yang bisa sakit menyeimbangkan ‘nomor reproduksi dasar’ virus, jumlah orang yang akan terinfeksi oleh seseorang yang terinfeksi.” Dengan kata lain, satu-satunya “dikte yang benar” endemik adalah, seperti yang dicatat oleh majalah Atlantic, “sedikit prediktabilitas” dalam penyebaran penyakit. Yang terpenting, kata Katzourakis, tidak ada definisi yang tersirat bahwa penyakit ini ringan. Dia mencatat bahwa malaria, endemik di banyak bagian dunia, menewaskan 600.000 pada tahun 2020. Tuberkulosis, penyakit endemik lainnya, menewaskan 1,5 juta orang. “Sebagai ahli virologi evolusioner, saya frustrasi ketika pembuat kebijakan menyebut kata endemik sebagai alasan untuk melakukan sedikit atau tidak sama sekali,” tulis Katzourakis.

Definisinya endemik yang lebih luas mengisyaratkan masalahnya di sini. Sesuatu bersifat endemik bila lazim pada kelompok tertentu. Itu berasal dari bahasa Yunani endēmos, yang berarti asli dari orang-orang tertentu. Ini juga berlaku untuk virus endemik. Mereka memiliki konsekuensi yang sangat berbeda untuk kelompok yang berbeda dalam satu wilayah geografis. Peneliti kesehatan masyarakat di Dartmouth College Anne Sosin menunjuk HIV sebagai contoh. Pengobatan terobosan, terapi antiretroviral, tersedia untuk orang Amerika pada tahun 1996. Tetapi di bagian lain dunia, seperempat abad kemudian, pasien masih memiliki akses terbatas terhadap pengobatan tersebut. Di sini di Amerika Serikat, HIV memengaruhi jumlah orang Afrika-Amerika yang tidak proporsional: Pada tahun 2019, 42 persen orang yang didiagnosis dengan penyakit itu adalah orang kulit hitam. Covid juga memiliki efek yang sangat besar pada orang Amerika Kulit Hitam dan Coklat—dan Sosin khawatir para politisi dapat menggunakan “endemik” sebagai alasan untuk menghindari dalam menghadapi dinamika rasial virus. “Jika kita tidak secara agresif menargetkan perbedaan tersebut,” katanya, “kita meletakkan dasar untuk keadaan endemik yang sangat tidak adil.”

Jika dua tahun terakhir telah mengajari kita sesuatu, virus yang selalu berubah ini menantang kita untuk merespons dan beradaptasi saat varian baru muncul. Setelah komentar Gandhi tentang virus “endemik”, tren berbalik. Omicron mengamuk, dengan angka kematian harian memecahkan rekor. Tidak terpengaruh, beberapa politisi menyatakan bahwa itu adalah virus, yang sekarang mewabah, dapat terlupakan. “Ketika Anda memiliki virus pernapasan endemik, defaultnya adalah, Anda menjalani hidup Anda,” kata Gubernur Florida Ron DeSantis pada bulan Januari. Dalam sebuah surat di bulan Februari, sekelompok 70 anggota DPR dari Partai Republik mendesak Presiden Joe Biden dan Menteri Kesehatan dan Layanan Kemanusiaan Xavier Becerra untuk “menerima bahwa Covid-19 adalah endemik, mengakui bahwa intervensi pemerintah yang berat saat ini lebih banyak merugikan daripada kebaikan, dan segera mulai proses di mana kita melepaskan” perlindungan Covid dan “kembali normal.”

Covid tidak harus mengendalikan kita. Juga tidak harus menyebabkan lebih banyak kematian massal. Tetapi jika kita benar-benar ingin belajar hidup dengan virus, “endemik” tidak bisa berarti “berpuas hati”.

[Penafian penting: Terjemahan ini tidak didukung oleh majalah Mother Jones dan tidak boleh digunakan sebagai dasar nasihat medis. Important disclaimer: This translation is not endorsed by Mother Jones Magazine and should not be used as the basis of medical advice.]

Source: “Endemic” Covid Doesn’t Mean Mild

Poem: Night Time in the Mountains By Chairil Anwar

Night Time in the Mountains

By Chairil Anwar, 1946

 

I wonder: Is it this moon that makes
the cold, makes the houses pallid and freezes the forest?

This is the first time I’ve been so completely able to respond
to the desire: Hey, there’s a little kid playing tips
with her shadow!

 


Pantja Raja, No. 1 Vol. 2, 15 Nov 1946, p. 482.

Poem: 64 By Emha Ainun Nadjib

64

By Emha Ainun Nadjib

 

My God
one among the thousands of faults
that ensnare the history of our life
is the error we fall into when deciding 
how much backwardness is contained in our progress
how much failure is contained in our success
how much destruction is contained in our improvement
how pressing is the darkness contained in our wakening
how enormous is the backwardness contained in our advancement
and how much war is contained in our call for peace.

My God
in our eyes so full of arrogance
ever greater grows the confusion of
what is to be left behind and what embraced
what is of the heights and what of the depths

 

 


Emha Ainun Nadjib.  99 untuk Tuhanku [99 For My God],  Pustaka Bandung  1983.

 

Short Story: The Story of a Pair of Shorts By Idrus

The Story of a Pair of Shorts

By Idrus

Right on the day that the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Kusno’s father bought him a pair of shorts. 1001 twill pants, Made in Italy.

Kusno’s father was politically illiterate. He didn’t know how important the attack was. He only knew that his son no longer had proper pants to wear. Everyone around the world who more or less knew about politics frowned, out of revenge, out of worry, out of anger. But Kusno’s father smiled happily that day. He had succeeded in doing something that at first he thought he wouldn’t be able to do. Buy Kusno a pair of shorts.

At the time Kusno was 14 years old. He had just finished elementary school. Now he wanted to apply for a job. And with the new pants it seemed to him that any job was open. He would prove to his father that he was a child who knew how to repay a kindness. In short the Kusno family that day rejoiced as never before. And the news of Pearl Harbor did not resonate in the slightest in the hearts of these simple people.

That’s telling the truth as it was only the big people who wanted war, the simple people only wanted peace!

But Kusno did not find a job as quickly as he thought he would. The offices knew what the attack on Pearl Harbor meant. They were not taking on any new workers either. Black clouds were gathering over the offices and through the gaps in the clouds peered the face of the angle of death.

Kusno was forced to lower his selling price, from clerk to porter, and from porter to postman. And after going up to ten offices he finally succeeded in obtaining a job, as a postman, with a salary of ten rupiahs per month.

Kusno’s father was worried. He himself was a postman. Did his son have to become a postman too? And were Kusno’s children to become postmen also? From generation to generation becoming postmen? He had never aspired to this, his family becoming a family of postmen. But like other villagers in difficult circumstances Kusno’s father remembered God: people strive but it is God who determines the outcome!

Kusno worked diligently but his 1001 twill pants were becoming faded because they were being washed so often. Every month he hoped he would be able to buy a new pair of pants, but his ten rupiahs was not even enough for food. So naturally the 1001 twill shorts had to be washed all the more often and every time they were washed, they looked all the more distressing.

All of Kusno’s thoughts were on those pants. What would happen to him if he couldn’t wear the pants anymore? Every day he prayed that God would not make it rain. And when it rained Kusno looked down at his pants as a mother looks at a child about to be sent onto the battlefield.

1001 twill. 1 multiplied by 1 is equal to 1. And what is 1 minus 1?

This is what went through Kusno’s mind as he thought about the 1001 pants. Especially as there was no money to buy soap. Even though the pants were dirty.

No, the simple people did not want war. They just wanted to live a simple life and live free from the fear that tomorrow they would not have any pants.

But the high and mighty people wanted war. One side wanted war for democracy and the other wanted it for the common prosperity of Greater East Asia.

Kusno did not know the meaning of democracy, and the expression prosperity was very interesting to him. He in fact remembered his pants. Prosperity for him was pants. And because of that he welcomed the Japanese soldiers with hugs, kisses and handshakes.

And as most of the Indonesian nation lived in the hope of independence, Kusno lived in the hope of new pants, hoped continually for three and a half years.

But like independence the pants too were unthinkable. And when Kusno gave up his hope, the 1001 pants were not like pants anymore. In places they were threadbare and what had once been white was now a blackish yellow. Because of that they were no longer fit to be worn by a postman. When Kusno summoned the courage to ask for a pair from the head of his office, he was yelled at so severely that he lost heart at once.

He arrived at the office a few days later but in the end the shame overcame the salary of ten rupiahs and he asked to resign.

Although the following days were dark for Kusno, he was now free of the shame that was etched on his face. He knew that a dark and dreadful day would befall him. But God was merciful and gracious. That was Kusno’s belief.

One day Kusno had a headache. He knew that the headache would soon go away if he could fill his stomach. For two days and two nights he ate nothing but tree leaves. It crossed his mind to sell the 1001 pants, to buy just food that was fit for humans to eat. But he quickly rejected the thought. If he sold the pants his stomach would be full for a few seconds, but after that what would he cover his nakedness with? Once also he thought about stealing someone else’s property but God said stay away from stealing. And Kusno’s family had for generations feared God, even though he had never seen him.

So that is how Kusno came to not sell the pants, to not steal, to often suffer from headaches, and to live from tree leaves. But he lived on, miserable indeed, but he lived with pride.

About the 1001 twill pants there is nothing more to say. At some point they must have disappeared from the face of the earth. And could they have disappeared from the face of this earth together with Kusno?

But be that as it may Kusno would not lose hope. He was born in misery, lived with misery. And even if his 1001 pants disappeared and became rags, Kusno would continue to fight against suffering even if only to obtain another pair of 1001 twill pants.

The only thing Kusno was not yet able to understand was why there were still always wars. Kusno felt like someone who had been sacrificed.

 


The Story of a Pair of Shorts (Kisah Sebuah Celana Pendek) was originally published in the current affairs magazine Gema Suasana, Number 1 & 2, 1 January 1948 [Retrieved from (Gema Suasana, 1948) Cerpen Idrus: Kisah Sebuah Celana Pendek https://kumpulanfiksi.wordpress.com/2020/01/08/gema-suasana-1948-cerpen-idrus-kisah-sebuah-celana-pendek/ 2 January 2022]. Reprinted in Indrus, Dari Ave Maria Ke Jalan Lain Ke Roma: [ed. Malaya, Chet. 1]. Kuala Lumpur: Pustaka Melayu Baru, 1963. Print.

Indonesian Translation Service - The Story of a Pair of Shorts By Idrus 1948
Indonesian Translation Service – The Story of a Pair of Shorts By Idrus 1948

Featured image credit: From Historia.id, Celana Pendek Pendiri BangsaMenteri Penerangan Amir Sjarifuddin, memakai jas kedodoran, celana pendek, sambil merokok, berpose bersama presiden Sukarno, wakil presiden Mohammad Hatta, dan para menteri kabinet pertama Republik Indonesia di halaman rumah Sukarno, di Jalan Pegangsaan Timur No. 56 Jakarta, pada 4 Oktober 1945. 

For some interesting background see: Celana Pendek dan Cerita Pendek By Deddy Arsya Jan 2018; and Shorts and Starvation by Thea Yantra Hutanamon

New Album: Menolak Tunduk By Wukir Suryadi

New Album: Menolak Tunduk [Refuse to Obey]

By Wukir Suryadi

Based on album notes from Bandcamp:

The uncertain situation of the pandemic due to government policies that are not concerned with the welfare and security of the people makes anyone indignant. Survival is initiated independently and collectively through community solidarity action, including protest. Ironically, community action has not been responded to as an aspiration prompting government improvement, but instead was responded to with repression. Wukir’s statement of disobedience is not only directed against the sociopolitical conditions, but also against all things that limit and restrict freedom of expression.

This attitude is reflected in the compositions on this album. It’s not as melodic as it used to be. Dark as usual, aggressive, abrasive, transcendental, and definitely tribal. The percussion element is very dominant. This emerged from his new instrument in the form of a wooden box with a line-shaped hole. This ancient-futuristic album marks a tumultuous new cross-dimensional era to affirm our stance, to disobey.

credits
released November 10, 2021

Instruments:
Kentongan serie A and B,
Guitar, Industrial Mutant, Solet, Senyawa x Benchlab Pedal serie R prototype

Recorded in Senyawa Mandiri, 2021
Mastered by Joseph Lamont

license
some rights reserved

Tags
alternative experimental indonesia Yogyakarta

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