Here’s the reason why people who gather with friends or organize children’s parties are persecuted.
Living a life that’s unaffected by COVID is now a status symbol. Regular people can’t go to the kid’s gym here in town. But if you can shell out $150 for an hour of play, you can bring your kids and a bunch of their friends, and they can play.
It’s the same with a million other activities. Art classes, music classes, sports, play spaces.
And, of course, it’s the same with schools. $1,200 a month gets you in-person teaching and summer camp and kids’ theater and gym and a music teacher and a tennis instructor.
COVID, schmovid. Those who can pay send their kids to a real school. In the midst of the worst lockdowns, you can buy access to any public space you want with any number of maskless people if you have enough money. Museums, performing arts. It’s all open. Just not for me and you.
When you organize a kid’s birthday party or hold a barbecue at your place, you rob these people of their status symbol. If anybody can have a party, theirs becomes just one of many.
I know for an absolute fact (because I heard people say it quite openly) that this is how this works. A kid who says “I had a birthday party” is signaling to other kids that she’s part of the wealthy minority.
Normal life has been turned into a luxury product. And now the rich are purchasing normalcy for themselves and their kids. The whole point of a luxury good is that only a few can have it. The enjoyment that can be derived from the feelings of “I’m a good parent / superior human being because I can give all this to my kid” is intense. Why would the people who can now afford to buy normalcy give this privilege away? Why would they share it with you? Why would they give up the gigantic competitive advantage that having a normal childhood brings?