Mark Dolan: Covid vaccine bullying is the stuff of nightmares

Mark Dolan
Mark Dolan

The Health Secretary has said he is 'disappointed', five England international footballers are refusing their Covid jabs

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Sajid Javid has said he is 'disappointed', five England international footballers are refusing to have the coronavirus vaccine.

The Health Secretary, warned the stars, they are 'role models' for youngsters and should be encouraging them, to get the jab. He issued an appeal to the players, to help protect themselves and those around them, by getting their doses. This a different tone to the one he struck in an earlier interview, in which he said care workers in England should “get out and get another job”, if they don’t want to get vaccinated.

Maybe he should get out and get another job. He did just that, when he resigned as chancellor last year, in a row with Dominic Cummings and the PM. Senior figures in the care industry have begun to raise serious concerns, that the deadline for workers to be fully vaccinated is too soon, and could lead to damaging staff shortages.

Welcome to a pandemic so bad, the authorities are planning to fire thousands of care home staff and other health professionals, as we enter a challenging winter. What’s worse, an unvaccinated healthcare worker? Or no healthcare worker at all? I welcomed the arrival of the vaccine and I'm double jabbed.

But vaccinating absolutely everyone, even those at minuscule risk, has now become a religion, an ideology, a cult. When so many globally are in need, surely we should share our supplies. And cast your mind back to early in the pandemic and the words of the then Health Secretary, the government’s "chipolata smuggler in chief" Matt Hancock.

This is the man who said that once the vulnerable had been vaccinated, we could get on with our lives. I say, encourage people to have the vaccine, no problem, make it easy sure, but don't ride roughshod over peoples' basic human rights, threaten them with social exclusion, demonise them and most reprehensibly, threaten their employment. It's not acceptable in a free society, and it does nothing to help the vaccine cause.

The more coercion that is deployed, the harder the pushback will be from those who are unsure. Strong evidence now shows that the most robust immunity, beyond that of the vaccine itself, comes from healthy members of the population getting Covid and recovering. But it's now those self-same healthy members of the population, including children and now fit beyond belief Premier League footballers, that the government are going after.

This after the JCVI said we shouldn’t jab the over 12s, but the government press on with it anyway. It just doesn't make any sense.

There may be some in vulnerable groups who choose not to have the vaccine. I can't imagine why, but that’s a matter of personal choice and ultimately it is a human right to not have the vaccine, to get Covid and be ill with it.

Because the only alternative to this, is having a society where we literally strap people to a chair, and jab them against their will. I shouldn’t be giving the government any ideas.

So what are the vax facts? It’s great at reducing hospitalisations and tragic Covid deaths, but you can still catch Covid and transmit it, which means that Covid passports, endless testing of healthy, asymptomatic people, and bullying those who have opted not to be jabbed isn't just wrong, but the stuff of nightmares. Welcome to hell.