When things get tight, narrow and dangerous, that’s when you get to know the people. As they really are, free from all pretense. After two years of the pandemic, it can be seen that this is also true for societies. When the Chinese dictator Xi Jinping turns millions of apartments into cages, and when many here are now mocking it, then remember the first months of the pandemic.

Were there not Corona tones here and there and especially from Bavaria, which, if not directly after a cage, sounded very strict? We remember the curfew, the “corona leash” with a maximum movement radius of 15 kilometers, the ban on sitting on a park bench or singing. Shouldn’t we be ashamed, regret, or at least learn something from it today?

There is the matter of the Corona fines in Hamburg. The city has earned more than eight million euros from violations of the infection protection rules. At the peak of the pandemic, the catalog of fines included 47 punishable points, from prohibited sports (up to 5000 euros) to forgotten or incorrect contact details (up to 1000 euros) to the ban on not leaving the country directly as a transit traveler (up to 1000 euros). 3000 euros).

Almost 1,500 cases are still pending in Hamburg. A retired couple was also affected because of incomplete information on a contact tracing form. They should pay a fine of 357 euros. The couple had been sitting in a bakery over the summer. The inspectors noticed that the contact sheet was incomplete.

The man, 86, has been acquitted. His wife, 87, with dementia, not yet. The procedure, a court spokesman weighs down, should probably be discontinued. What is that? Stubborn, curmudgeonly, bureaucratic, overzealous or just plain German?

From Spain one hears of similar occurrences. But followed by belated insight, regret, redemption, and the humility that comes before the ability to learn. In Spain, too, crackdowns were made, with arrests and hefty fines. But after that, the state promised its citizens to refund all corona fines. The constitutional court helped, declaring the measures unconstitutional.

A government shows itself capable of correction. Indeed, that is possible. But not in Germany. After the Bavarian administrative court had declared the country’s curfew ineffective, the Ministry of Health there said: The restrictions were “completely correct”.