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“Immune”, yes: but from what?

“Immune”, yes: but from what?

For a philosophical reflection on tracing

I think a preamble is necessary since the following was drafted before the dpcm of April 26, 2020 was officially issued which unexpectedly made the date of May 4 (still the start date of Phase 2) not the one that we could have proposed.

Since the following that we present has loaded this date with meaning, we would like to specify this way: we would like, in any case, to consider May 4 as “date X” in which – finally – we will be free, again, to move . At least without the self-certification regime, which certainly makes travel limited if not impossible.

We think the article is always valid as a philosophical reflection: the desire for Freedom is always alive, symbolized or less than May 4th, now more than ever that we learn how its fulfillment is postponed; so let’s go even more voraciously in search of what they have deprived us of.

Let us return what they have taken away from us, and who now say they want to grant us, allow (to do). Grant and allow, as if they had the power to deny citizens a constitutionally necessary and absolutely mandatory right; power that no one granted him, no one wanted them to take. In any case, we do not want to go further into digressions that are not strictly part of the reflection that we present there. We wish you a good read. 

Captivity and Freedom: “Immune”, the ministerial application for tracing the infection, which makes us immune to both.

The government’s promise to “set us free” from this home isolation – or arrest, as many have said – on May 4, the predetermined start date of the phantom Phase 2, has a price: download an application that can hopefully keep track of the spread of infection on Italian soil thanks to the tracking of people’s movements. It is obvious that such an operation, although it can certainly be justified by a concrete and pervasive health emergency, leaves room for many criticisms, including the much discussed privacy that could be affected by the aforementioned tracking.

All for a “superior good”, that of health, that of life, that of being able to suffocate this virus in itself, trying to further reduce its stringent and pernicious grip.

Exposed in this way, surely the application that should help us do the above seems to be necessary and necessary: ‚Äč‚Äčtherefore, one’s privacy is absolutely expendable if one’s life is at stake. But is it really at stake?

As far as we currently know, the percentage figure that takes into account deaths, present on the ISS website [1], is absolutely null about those individuals who have not exceeded sixty years of age and who do not have pre-existing diseases: therefore, is our life really in danger or is there an attempt to safeguard a health system that makes – but above all has – water from all sides?

A poor performance of the health system certainly justifiable by the collective unpreparedness about the real danger of this virus, by the very poor knowledge – also thanks to the little sharing of scientifically reliable information from China, the first world country with the swarm of the virus – general of the bacterium.

So far we are telling you how much we are bombarded daily, minute by minute, by whatever news, television or whatever: we are not here for this; let alone the field of scientific speculation and news to go into the philosophical one. This absolutely does not mean abandoning the concreteness of things, but rather going deeper into what things are, trying to highlight characteristics and facets that are not immediately visible and understandable “with the naked eye”.

Philosophically speaking: are we free? Surely not. From May 4th, will we be? Yes, that is: we will be free to be able to be prisoners.

At this moment we are in a transition phase: the health threat has certainly not passed (the virus is still among us and will continue to be so until an efficient vaccine), but the threatening one towards the health system apparently is; we have declining data, both from ICU patients and currently ill patients, for days. We therefore think of Phase 2, that is, that of coexistence with the virus: coexistence which must surely be reasoned and efficient so that it can be called “coexistence” and not “waiting for a renewed house arrest”.

But now, what most animates people’s thoughts is the feeling of lack of freedom and immediate re-appropriation of the same starting from May 4th. Now, we, we feel deprived of what we previously thought for granted and which now seems a luxury item: Freedom.

So, the date of May 4th, a symbol of the reopening of the production system and therefore an attempt to revive the economy after a stop in intensive care, is actually, for all of us, the date on which we will finally regain freedom: but is it really so?

Almost as if it were a fulmen in clause, here is a new obstacle is placed along our path to reacquire a luxury item that should ( MUST ) be within everyone’s reach: the government approves an application that tracks movements – albeit anonymously – of people (who will have to declare that they are positive, have been positive, or have never contracted the virus) so that the infection can be controlled. With this operation it is hoped that the second wave of contagions, now foreseen and already prophesied, will come out sweetened.

Acutely, Voltaire, in 1764, already said: << Your will is not free, but your actions are free. You are free to do when you have the power to do >> (Voltaire, Philosophical Dictionary, Newton Editore, 2010, Rome, p. 203); this maxim fits perfectly with our future situation. Our will will not be absolutely free from constraints, although our actions may (apparently) be: we will not be properly free since we will not have the power to do.

Power to do that will fail because of an eye that always, with manifest circumspection (not oxymoronic: we have given it the chance!), Looks at us and, worse than everything, judges: we will be viewed and carefully traced of our slightest movement and, consequently, of what we are doing, always and in any case. But, yes, absolutely: for a “superior good”! Denying our Freedom – which would be THE superior good – is absolutely convenient!

But: stop everyone! Having realized, to the government, how the proposal was to harm privacy (not that a complicated and intricate reasoning was needed to realize it), here the application in question becomes optional: “freely” everyone can decide whether to download it or less. Of course: precisely because they wanted to promote freedom, they also thought well of a penalty for those who did not want to join the project! Travel restrictions! Don’t you want to be traced? Well: you won’t be able to move as you wish!

A clever and subtle way to make the application optional-but-mandatory: in order not to suffer further limitations – and humiliations, because yes: it is humiliating – anyone will download this blessed application without however, and this is the point, believing in the project . The application will be perceived not as the possibility that we all have of being able to dull the virus, but as the laissez-passer useful for being able to achieve a piece of Liberty of which much – much! – we need!

How can you turn in the right direction if you don’t believe in what you’re doing? This is the question we want to ask by shouting: we will never get out of this emergency if we do not believe in the efficiency – due to evident flaws – of a system that tries – badly – in all ways to get out of it!

So, “Immune”: do you lift us from home isolation, make us believe that we can finally be intelligently-free again, and then drop us into a free-captivity?

Captivity and Freedom: “Immune”, the ministerial application for tracing the infection, which makes us immune to both.