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Were You At Malta’s Illegal White Rocks Rave?

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If you answered yes, not cool. You can try painting this whichever way you wish, but we see you for what you are.

A selfish git who decided that a good party was more important than the safety of everyone else around them.

What’s that you say? You were suffering from COVID fatigue? Guess what? So am I, but I’m sucking it up. Call me weird, but I just don’t feel comfortable putting my need for socialisation before the lives of those more vulnerable than me.

Do I hear you say the party-goers are young and it’s understandable that they violate all public health rules to party? Go fish.

Sure, I miss those days when you could just find a random cave or quarry, set up a Facebook event and dance till sunrise with a hundred strangers.

But with the virus numbers increasing exponentially, this is not the time to stick it to the man.

I’ve always been the biggest fan of random, underground events. But it’s insane to pull the ‘we have a right to party’ card when a party is likely to translate into a few scores of infected victims two weeks later.

So no, it’s not a matter of age. Once again, it is a matter of empathy. Of whether you care that your actions can literally kill someone. So, do you?

If your answer is a shrug, and that we can’t expect you to stay locked up and watch life pass you by,  then we have our answer to that question, don’t we? And it doesn’t say much about you.

Incidentally, no-one is suggesting you spend your days locked up inside. I, myself, go to the theatre, exhibitions, restaurants, beaches, my hairstylist and the spa. I simply use some common sense and keep a hawk-eye on whether measures are respected.

But back to Saturday’s rave. No, this was not about ‘going underground’ or ‘rising against the system’, or whatever imaginary, pseudo-cool ideology those who attended are trying to claim.

The selfishness displayed at last Saturday’s rave (and other similar events) is the very antithesis of the spirit behind genuine underground events.

Underground raves are characterized by a sense of solidarity, a sense of being one with a specific community. If what unites you to your community is a belief that it’s worth sacrificing human lives just so you can have fun… well then yes, I’m judging you.

And before the so-called ‘freedom fighters’ come crawling out of the woodwork, your right to freedom does not include a right to cause damage to others.

In other words, no you don’t have a right to party when there’s a global pandemic raging. And if you’re past the age of primary school, you really should know this without needing to have it explained.

Just to be clear, all this also applies to those who allow their restaurant to be transformed into a club, with everyone in each other’s faces.

And those who accept large groups, serve pitchers and bring out a platter of galletti to pass as food. As a friend rightfully pointed out, a stroll down Merchants Street or Strait Street in Valletta on a Friday night will quickly shed light on what I’m saying.

You won’t often catch me quoting Marx, but he seems to have been scarily on point with his theory of alienation. The more I look around me during pandemic times, the more I see people following an ethos of ‘I do me, and screw you if you’re hurt in the process’.

Meantime, there are those who closed off their wine bar or bar without so much as a peep and are now risking ruin.

And others who invested in big, international events and lost all their investment, because people insist on breaking the rules and dragging this out longer than necessary.

I do wonder how they feel when they watch this farce unfold every weekend.

And in the meantime, my grandmother lies in hospital with COVID-19, transmitted from a care home where all residents and workers had received the second dose of vaccine some three weeks earlier.

She lies there unmoving, barely breathing, while a disgusting section of fellow Maltese enjoy their right to party, and screw all else.

Because she’s had her time, right, and we all have to die.

For shame.

This is an article from a collaboration between Lovin Malta and Ramona Depares. She’s a writer who enjoys breaking down the walls of the patriarchy with a keyboard and a smile. And the occasional glass of wine. Check out her arts & lifestyle blog on www.ramonadepares.com.

Lovin Malta is open to external contributions that are well written and thought-provoking. If you would like your commentary to be featured as a guest post, please write to [email protected], add Guest Post in the subject line and attach a profile photo for us to use near your byline. 

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