Here’s a really, really hot take from the Huffington Post’s opinion section by University of Oxford Professor Emily Cousens, who hopes that the U.K. doesn’t win the race to develop a COVID-19 vaccine. If it did, you see, it would just perpetuate the myth that you have to be white, male, and Oxford-educated to be an effective leader when the countries most widely praised for taking control of the coronavirus pandemic are led by women.

We suppose we don’t have to mention that Cousens teaches women’s studies and her area of research is “vulnerability and gender.”

We have to quote a little bit here because the whole thing’s amazing:

If there is enough vaccine to go round, the UK will be the world’s saviour. We’ll quickly forget the devastating delay of the UK government to take action, as Boris Johnson proudly safeguarded British institutions like individual liberty, and the pub, over lives.

We’ll forget the lessons that the pandemic has taught us so far: that the UK and the US are in fact not exceptions at the global stage. That we are not only vulnerable but can also afford to learn lessons from countries, regardless of whether we have a special relationship with them – such as South Korea. That being white, male and Oxford-educated may not be the only criteria for effective leadership (the countries whose responses have been most widely praised, Germany and New Zealand among others, are all led by women).

This war-time rhetoric is useful in instilling a sense that this is a moment when individuals need to make sacrifices and put the country first. But this time, the enemy is not a nation. It is a microbe. So why do our collective solidarities end at the border?

So instead of Orange Man Bad, it’s Boris Johnson Bad, so wouldn’t it teach both the U.S. and U.K. a lesson if some other country came up with the vaccine first?

Of course.

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