Once upon a time, many years ago, in a distant land called Alltooreal, there ruled an Emperor called Democrat. Democrat was an evil man whose only desire was for power. He viewed his subjects as mere means to an end and badly mistreated them. As time went by, his subjects grew weary of his mistreatment and began devising ways to rid themselves of Democrat.
You see, Democrat had no moral compass, only the desire for power informed his consciousness. So, when word of rebellion reached Democrat, he was very angry and knew he had to act to crush the opposition. But Democrat was having trouble deciding what to do, for he was already abusing his subjects beyond the limits of human tolerance.
Just then, Democrat remembered hearing about a virus that had arrived in his Kingdom from a far away shore. Although it had been with them for several months, without much, if any notice, Democrat knew he could weaponize the virus to crush the rebellion and solidify his grip on power forever. But how?
Seeking an answer, Democrat convened a meeting with his top medical advisors. Although they knew that the virus was merely a variation of the common cold, from which 99.8% of all people recover, they decided to convince the subjects that this virus was a novel one and, as such, was as deadly as the Black Death. Democrat knew that when faced with the fear of certain death, his subjects would surrender their will to him, and he would be free to rule forever. All he had to do now was to put his plan into action and he did.
As Democrat and his minions spread their lies about the virus, his subjects were, as expected, terrified, and looked to Democrat to save them. Under the guise of public health and safety, they permitted Democrat to place them under house arrest, confiscate their businesses, close their houses of worship, take away their public entertainment and more. In fact, the subjects were so scared, they gave up most of the liberties and possessions they and their ancestors had fought for without so much as a whimper.
As weeks went by however, some of the subjects grew restless and sought to emerge from house arrest. Realizing that he had to let them out to keep them obedient, Democrat knew he faced his greatest challenge. How could he grant temporary reprieve from house arrest while keeping the fear of the deadly virus alive in the hearts and minds of his subjects. And then it hit him and Democrat exclaimed “I’ll create the myth of the Magic Mask!”
So, Democrat ordered his subjects to wear a mask over their face at all times. He convinced them that these masks were magic and would keep them safe from the dreaded deadly virus. Wearing one, said the Emperor, was a sign of great wisdom, compassion, and virtue. Anyone who objected was shamed into compliance. And so, the Myth of the Magic Mask took hold among his subjects and became an obsession. People were rarely seen without one. Some poor souls even wore them while alone and at home! Despite almost universal acceptance and belief in the Myth, Democrat knew all along that these masks were not only not magic but ineffective in preventing the spread of the virus. He also knew that almost everyone who caught the virus recovered and few faced any danger from it at all.
But Democrat felt he needed one more grift to terrify and break the will of his subjects forever. As he pondered, it came to him and he exclaimed “I’ll separate and isolate them from one another, so they have nowhere to turn but to me. I will call this fraud The Need for Social Distancing!” And just as they had with the Magic Mask, his subjects meekly complied. As they Social Distanced, they grew further and further apart from one another, not only physically, but emotionally, and spiritually as well. As the Emperor hoped, their collective will was broken and their spirit eventually died. Over time, the people gave up altogether and, from what I am told, Alltooreal is a now a bleak, sad and lonely place. Nevertheless, the subjects, no longer free but still convinced of the reality of an enemy that never existed, continue to obediently adhere to the Myth of the Magic Mask and The Need for Social Distancing. Like another Emperor’s false belief in invisible clothes, the subjects chose to live a collective lie rather than to go against the mob. It is their new normal. And the Emperor ruled happily ever after.