Restraint Shown: How different people are responding


Two short and separate stories on restraint.

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Earlier tonight, this woman’s story appeared in my feed.  I haven’t seen her name, but I empathize with her.  She is homeless in Oxnard, California and had mental health issues long before the pandemic began.  She reports that since then she has been dehumanized and mistreated by doctors and harassed by police.  Because of course they would, she’s powerless and vulnerable.

Naturally, the first thing asked by disgusting individuals who see the video is, “why does she have a smart phone?”

That inappropriate question is answered in another video she posted.  She explains that during Obama’s terms, a program was established to give free cell phones to the homeless.  For people with no mailing address and no public pay phones anymore (and a landline is impossible), having a cell phone is invaluable.  A person can contact shelters, public services, medical care and other places without having to travel there.  Travel is both time consuming and expensive, not to mention a waste of time if the person doesn’t know in advance if services are available.

In the second video you can see that the phone is an Alcatel phone which is probably several years old and either second or third hand.  So to anyone asking inappropriate questions: NO, the poor and homeless don’t have iphones. They have a working phone given to them that lets them make calls and take calls, not play online gaming.

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After the most recent returnees two weeks ago were quarantined, Taiwan mandated masks on all public public transportation – subways, buses, taxis, intercity trains.  If you’re not wearing one, you can’t get in or on any public transport.  I’ve had bus drivers skip past my stop because I was waiting for the bus to arrive (mask in hand) before putting it on.  Mildly annoying.

A week ago, a 20-something woman took off her mask in a subway and refused to put it on (facebook video, no other source available).  The staff attempted to prevent her from boarding the train, and only after a long 5-10 atempt to reason with her (the video is edited for length) did police finally use force to remove her.  What’s amazing is the level of restraint shown by staff, security and police, the avoidance of physical force until uncounted reasonable attempts were made.

This has been fairly common, the lack of any need to use force.  People have willingly complied with new rules because of the government’s transparency and sharing of information.  The young woman in the video is a rare exception.  There has actually been more trouble with people ignoring smoking rules than mask rules.

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