A college professor in a column of the Catholic Peace Weekly expresses her opinion on the post-vaccine Korean situation.
As the supply of vaccines to respond to Covid-19 has begun, the world is preparing for the post-vaccine era. The new era requires members of society to have different attitudes and values. It has been shown empirically that what we took for granted through direct face-to-face meetings, such as classes, meetings, and social activities, can be fully realized in a non-face-to-face manner.
Now, it is rare to question various social activities that take place in a non-face-to-face manner.
While the word "post-corona" emphasizes the disconnection from the pre-Corona era, post-vaccine has a more active and future-oriented meaning of continuing to cope with the social risks of Corona 19. The new changes that have emerged throughout our society triggered by Corona 19 will become the driving force for the changes we will experience. In other words, changes are made continuously through constant dialogue and reflection with the previous era, not through a break from the previous era.
If the process of preparing for a new era takes place disconnected from the past, all that is necessary is to clear up past mistakes and failures. However, in the post-vaccine era, both past successes, errors, and failures can be precious lessons needed to prepare for the future era.
Then, how do we prepare for the post-vaccine era? The media has the role and responsibility to set important agendas and form public opinion in our society. Therefore, the media should help form the attitudes and values demanded by the new era. For past successes, failures, and difficulties to become assets for the future, objective and sometimes serious critical evaluations of past experiences must be made. If we try to find the cause of the failures and social crisis only in the external situations that exclude oneself there is little hope. If things go well, it's my virtue, if they don't, the other is at fault-thinking will increase polarization by the media, but it can also be a nutrient that cultivates tolerance and inclusion toward others.
Humans tend to perceive and judge social issues based on their collective identity. For example, if the media deals with conflicts of interest among various groups in society, viewers are likely to classify themselves and make judgments based on group identity. Self-centered thinking bias can strengthen self-group-centered attitudes and behaviors that strengthen support for the inner group that I belong to and antipathy to the group I do not belong to. The criteria used for objective and rational judgment cannot vary depending on the object, otherwise, the standard cannot be called objective or "standard". The efforts of both the media and the public to escape self-centered and group-centered thinking begins by evaluating oneself objectively.
Today, Korean culture, K-pop and K-drama, played a significant role in changing public opinion at home and abroad more positively. The government's preemptive action against Corona 19 has created another new sign of K-protection. In the pre-vaccine era, Korea's behavior and attitude have followed the world standard, Korea can present a new indicator of "K-class", a new standard of behavior and attitude in the post-vaccine era. The first step would be to check our individual actions and attitudes in the new era.