Friday, October 23, 2020

Should we trust Dan Andrews?

This is similar to the question, should you trust Jesus? Perhaps different only in two respects. The first difference is that we're contemporaries of the 48th Premier of Victoria. But let's look at the similarities before considering the second difference. If we trust Dan Andrews then we'll follow the rules he makes about managing the Coronavirus. Civilisations are built on trust, we trust the engineers who build our bridges, the pilots who fly our aeroplanes and even the other drivers we share the road with. We can't investigate everything, but momentous decisions should investigated before we put our trust (aka faith) in something or someone. The Cold War slogan "trust but verify" is very apt. 

If you trust Dan Andrews, then you'll want to defend his decisions and obey the pandemic regulations. If you trust Jesus, then you'll want to defend his words and obey his directions. However this where a second difference emerges between the two. Followers of Jesus are encouraged to "trust but verify", to look into the evidence for Jesus, his words and actions for themselves. Some of the evidence about Jesus is complicated and contested.  However Dan Andrews hasn't revealed any of the reasons or evidence for his pandemic related decisions. There are a few vague details about a model forecasting the number of future infections on the Health department website. Some of the lock-down regulations are being wound back, but many remain, and none of the evidence or medical advice for them is made public. Weirdly, it's a case of blind faith, we simply trust Dan Andrews without verifying (& evaluating) the information he is basing those decisions on. 

Now he is of course the Premier and therefore it is his prerogative to make the rules for our society, particularly during a crisis. The pandemic was and is a big deal. Jesus was and is a big deal. Dan Andrews probably doesn't want to share all the information he is using to make his decisions because it is probably complicated and contested. And this is where we come to the second difference between Jesus and Dan Andrews. This is the beauty of following Jesus, is that with some digging you can look at the evidence yourself, weigh it up and decide accordingly.