This is what normally crowded Legian beach looked like as of a couple days ago, as a result of Bali’s tourism shutdown.
While we love Bali and the Balinese people, we have to note that Indonesia’s approach to COVID, like that of many countries in the world, can best be described as cowardly and pathetically timid. Yet fully supported by the people.
There have been a total of only 48 COVID related deaths in Bali, on a densely packed island of over 4 million residents, not including (the now non-existent) tourists. All of Indonesia, a country of 267 million people, has recorded just over 5000 COVID related deaths.
If you know Bali – and we do – you know that you’re far more likely to die from a motorbike accident than from COVID.
And neither Bali nor Indonesia have the luxury of providing their citizens with safety nets, so when the islands are shut down people really suffer; unemployment is rife, and people will starve, or turn to prostitution to survive. All in order to feed irrational superstition, the sensationalized fear-mongering media, and to protect cowardly government officials.
After months of being completely shut down, Bali is finally opening to tourism, but only domestic tourism, which is a small fraction of the overall tourist market there.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again; if you look at the statistics, they fully support the idea that you should be cautious if you have a pre-existing respiratory problem. But if you don’t, you’re far more likely to die in a car accident or from heart disease than from COVID.
Let’s hope that at least one life has been saved for every thousand people who have had their lives destroyed by the shutdown in Bali.