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Failure to Take Action During Pandemic Results in Tragedy

Italy has been hit hard by Covid-19. In a penetrating article, Italian journalist Mattia Ferraresi makes an interesting argument that the fundamental failure in Italy was not a lack of testing or slow political action but a social and collective failure: People just did not take the coronavirus seriously enough to even slightly adapt their habits. It is a brave argument. It would be much easier to criticize the government for errors of action or inaction, rather than risk being accused of blaming the victims. But what Ferraresi saw and could not repress was something else: the radical incapacity on the part of the Italian public to adapt to the possibility of a terrible outcome, an outcome discounted by everyone until it was really too late.

Ferraresi said, “I and many other Italians just did not see the need to change our routines for a threat we could not see.” Even though he had accumulated a lot of information on the virus, he said he lacked what you might call “moral knowledge.” He knew about the virus, but the issue was not affecting his actions.

Possible Preaching Angle:

The same denial and lack of action is seen from the time of Noah to our present day. People deny their sins, ignore the need for radical action in repentance, and suffer the consequences of the ultimate tragedy of eternity in hell.


Bruno Maçães; “Conceit and Contagion: How the Virus Shocked Europe,” Quillette.com (3-14-20)

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