Mark Dolan: What's happening in Austria is the reason why we cannot stand idly by and say nothing

I honestly don't know how this can be legal. The mandating of a medical procedure is unprecedented

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What's happening in Austria is the reason why we cannot stand idly by and say nothing, as the fundamental values of a free society – democracy, freedom, bodily autonomy - face an egregious assault.

Not satisfied with locking down the unvaccinated, which involves separating and segregating a group within the population, which is never a great look for a country like Austria with its recent history and notwithstanding the huge outcry from within their country and the 2 million unvaccinated citizens, far from retreating, the Austrians have dug in and gone one step further by announcing that the COVID-19 vaccine will be mandatory for all citizens in February of next year.

I honestly don't know how this can be legal. The mandating of a medical procedure is unprecedented. And how is this going to work logistically? Will people be fined if they don't have the vaccine? And if so does that mean that the poor will be the low hanging fruit for the jab?

You’ve run out of money to pay the fines, time for the needle? Will the unvaccinated ultimately go to jail? Ironically housed in crowded conditions with other inmates. Sends a mixed message doesn't it.

Or perhaps vaccine vans will just drive around the streets, bundling suspected unjabbed citizens into the back of the vehicle, perhaps gaffer-taping them to the floor or the wheels that will certainly lubricate the passage of the needle into their arms.

That's why I made a stand about masks all those months ago. I don't have a problem with face coverings per se it's the M word - mandate.

Sweden were in my view the way to go and latterly states in America like Florida and Texas, who allowed the public to make a judgement about the risk. For example, here’s a useful graph comparing no lockdown Sweden to medical apartheid Austria - very timely.

The argument for this is even more powerful now that the vaccine is available to all. If you're worried, you get the jab and you are protected. Jab done, job done.

If the vaccines work, why mandate them? If they don't work, why mandate them. Seems pretty logical to me, but logic has been another casualty of this pandemic.

If Covid passports, which link your medical status to certain freedoms and public services, is medical apartheid, then surely a mandate to have the vaccine is medical fascism.

That's why I must speak out. And I speak out, I believe, with some authority, given that I am double vaccinated and will take the booster. But that's my choice. I couldn't give an arse what goes into your arm. And I never will.

From three weeks to flatten the curve, to mask mandates and now a vaccine mandate, what we are seeing goes beyond the worst conspiracy theories. It's playing out before our very eyes. It’s not conspiracy, it’s policy. Credit to the Prime Minister for pushing back on all of these measures in England – plan B restrictions, vaccine passports, mask mandates - and long may that continue.

England has been a Sweden tribute band since freedom day on July 19. Both countries have taken a voluntary approach to measures and hey presto cases fell. In England, Sweden and elsewhere, freedom as a policy, appears to be achieving our freedom from the virus. Potentially by boosting natural immunity among the healthy population. Who knows. Even some of the most pessimistic scientific voices believe there will be no hellish winter spike of Covid infections in the UK. SAGE advisor Professor John Edmonds is quoted as saying just that in today’s Mail newspaper

And yet across Europe and around the world countries whose failing policies see them double down on vaccine passports are watching cases rise. Even Nicola Sturgeon has offered no evidence that Covid passports north of the border have stopped infection, a story reported in this week’s Spectator magazine by their writer Michael Simmons.

But why let facts get in the way of policy? I'm pro vaccine, it's clearly effective against severe illness and I'm incredibly happy that our most vulnerable are safer now, than they were a year ago. Covid is a nasty virus which has claimed too many lives and it can threaten treatment capacity in the NHS. But not right now and here's the truth, Covid has an average rate of sad deaths over 80 and is non-fatal to almost everyone. Nasty though it is, Covid is not bad enough, and the vaccine is not good, enough to justify this tyranny. To quote Professor Carol Sikora, respected oncologist of five decades and an unmissable regular on Dan Wootton’s brilliant show:

"Words can’t describe how outraged I am by the policy of compulsory vaccinations. It’s not how public health should be conducted. Consent is essential. I disagree with vaccine passports, but this is an entirely new level of unacceptable."

Very rare, but still documented, vaccine side effects are the responsibility of the patient who chooses to get jabbed or not. By mandating the jab, the Austrian state is potentially, by law, injuring its citizens and at worst killing them. And that's why the Austrians and anyone else considering mandating vaccines has crossed a line. These measures must be met with peaceful, legal resistance because otherwise there is no end to this. And it is the fundamental values of our country and society at stake. The alternative is not an option. What we’ve learned over the last 18 months, accepting endless measures at huge cost and in my view with limited reward, is that you cannot comply your way out of tyranny.

Big Bird is in the news folks. The Sesame Street character – a six foot yellow bird - has been banned from attending the US Conservative Political Action Conference, it’s been announced.

The iconic TV star was told he was not welcome at the 2022 Florida event, following a tweet from Big Bird, claiming to have received the COVID-19 vaccine.

I know the vaccine rollout has been going well, but I didn't realise they were now jabbing poultry. Now I’m not one for cancelling people or poultry, so I think Big Bird should be reinstated. But is it really the job of children's TV characters to advise their young audience on medical procedures?

I thought Sesame Street was there to teach them the alphabet and entertain them with stories and songs. And to teach them numbers – none of this adds up to me.

From which other characters are we to seek medical information? I wonder what Danger Mouse thinks of the flu jab. Is Peppa Pig worried about polio. What is Scooby Doo’s view on the MMR?

Probably thinks you should scooby dooby do it. Yikes. It's bad enough that Tesco used their Christmas ads to push the message of Covid passports.

Now children's characters are brainwashing youngsters to have a medication statistically they don't need. Don't take my word for it, the JCVI who advise the government on vaccines, ruled against jabbing the under 16s. But what do they know?

The font of all knowledge now is Big Bird, or should I say an out of work actor in a bird costume on a TV show. And anyway, this fluffy yellow monstrosity should be more worried about bird flu, shouldn’t he?

This whole bird business is foul, and I'm spitting feathers. With Christmas coming, the only thing Big Bird should do is get stuffed.