Okay, so some of the restrictions around COVID are being relaxed a little, but the general gist is that we still need to continue with social distancing, even if we have relaxed a little on some things. People can now gather in homes so long as the keep the number to no more than ten people, and everyone still observes the social distancing rule.
Okay, well that’s fair enough. There has also been a relaxing of the rule regarding masks, which are no longer mandatory in public at present but again, people are being asked to continue keeping their distance from each other. Probably a good thing seeing as the more virulent strain of the virus is making its way around the planet now and will probably get here sooner rather than later.
Which is why I am completely flummoxed over the thousands of fans permitted to attend the tennis! I only saw this because I flicked over to another channel on the telly to watch something advertised in the program guide, only to be met with the tennis about to start instead! Hoping it was just a short news update, I watched for a few moments, waiting for the other program, when it dawned on me that no, the station was televising the tennis instead and while they waited for the tennis starlets (who had no trouble entering Australia, while stranded Aussies trying to get home are still stranded) to make their entry, the cameras were panning around the stands while the commentators waffled on about how great it was to see so many spectators there for the match. Thousands of them actually.
Thousands? Now hang on a minute…we are still being asked to social distance and avoid gathering in large numbers anywhere, yet the stands at the tennis were crammed with spectators about as socially-distanced as sardines in a tin, and that was okay. Why was that okay? But it was the same with the football. Once they got past the initial cardboard cutouts phase, the real crowds were able to fill the stands in great numbers to watch the players getting all over each other. But heaven help you if you were one of fifty or more people on a beach or in a park, and only within a few centimetres from each other!
This is classic double standards if you ask me. Sports teams/people, and the fans who watch them, should not be exempt here. The social distancing rules are in place for a very good reason and if they are applicable to every other aspect of our lives then they should be applicable to sporting events as well. Better yet, don’t hold the event, because I don’t believe for a minute these clubs and organisations are all going to go under if they have to cancel their games. I was stunned when I saw the number of people in the stands, not a mask in sight and all sitting close together. How is this different from congregating in a large crowd in a park, or on a beach, or in someone’s back yard or living room? It isn’t. It’s no different at all.
Avoiding crowds and maintaining social distancing still applies at the moment, doesn’t it? So what’s with the thousands of spectators at the tennis? Or a football match?
No wonder people are confused.