Commentary – We are not in this together

Chris Clegg

Day after day during her news conferences, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, likes to say, “We’re all in this together.”

Medically speaking, yes.

Economically, no! A big fat no!

I find it insulting that Dr. Hinshaw keeps saying, “We’re all in this together.”

Permit me to explain why.

I ask Dr. Hinshaw if she has had to tell workers they are laid off or lost their jobs.

If the answer is no, we’re not all in this together.

I ask Dr. Hinshaw if she has to dip into life savings to pay bills during the pandemic.

If the answer is no, we’re not all in this together.

I ask Dr. Hinshaw if she realizes for some businesses that remain open, owners will not have enough money to pay into their pension fund. I am sure she does.

If the answer is no, we’re not all in this together.

I ask Dr. Hinshaw if she is worried her business will not survive the pandemic, after being forced to close.

If the answer is no, we’re not all in this together.

I ask Dr. Hinshaw if she sees the pain on municipal councillors’ faces as they struggle with budget cuts, layoffs, and lost revenue to the pandemic and – yes – dropping energy revenues. In small towns especially, these are councillors whose decisions are affecting friends.

If the answer is no, we’re not all in this together.

I ask Dr. Hinshaw if she has volunteered donating countless hours organizing community events which are cancelled.

If the answer is no, we’re not all in this together.

I could go on and on but you get the point? If Dr. Hinshaw answers no to any of these questions, we are not all in this together.

The fact is Dr. Hinshaw is confident and secure, taking home her salary. The fact is the economy is crumbling all around Alberta, especially for small business, which is still the lifeblood of the economy.

Dr. Hinshaw is typical of too many public servants – not all of them, mind you! – that simply believe and expect their gravy train will continue to pull in the station, day after day, week after week, month after month.

Dr. Hinshaw has no sense of what is really going on in the real world when she says, “We’re all in this together.”

Economically, there is a lot of pain in Alberta right now. The last thing any worker needs is to hear is Dr. Hinshaw giving us the goods that she is in the same boat as we are because she is not.

I will repeat again: we are not in this together economically.

Yes, medically, but that is it! The line should be drawn between the two. Dr. Hinshaw never makes it clear these two issues are different, yet they are very, very real.

Dr. Hinshaw should stick to what she is obviously an expert in: the medical field. Her news conferences do provide very good medical information.

She should leave the cutesy sayings to other people. Stick to the facts, Dr. Hinshaw, and don’t try to impress the public with ridiculous adages that simply are not true.

To be blunt, stick to the medical facts you do so well, then shut your yap! The “We’re all in this together” does nothing to ease the pain, suffering and worry working Albertans are currently feeling.

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