- Date published:
8:43 am, November 10th, 2021 - 58 comments
Categories: community democracy, covid-19, democracy under attack, health, human rights, Peace, poverty, racism, racism, uncategorized - Tags:
Advantage has written this very principled post on how as a matter of protection of an important principle the freedom protesters yesterday should be respected.
I agree as a principle that the right to protest is important. But my view is that the tolerance shown to them by the forces by the state is more than fine, in fact overly generous.
I have been on many protests in my time. I agree that the right to protest is necessary and important. The ability to broadcast generally unacceptable messages has changed humankind’s history for the better.
I watched the live feed yesterday. It felt very familiar. Impassioned speeches using the rhetoric and phrasing and passion of many protests I have been on.
But instead of protesting against apartheid or nuclear war or global warming or poverty they were protesting against the expectation that to decrease the spread of a deadly virus they wear something flimsy on their face and they get jabbed twice with something which has worked and is remarkably free of side effects.
They plagiarised progressive messages such as “my body my choice”. They talked about rights as if they are an absolute and not a feature of a civilised society which together with a number of other features, such as necessary health measures and minimum levels of pay and benefit support, are required to keep our society functioning.
And there was the frankly bat shit crazy stuff. Refusing to be vaccinated because a US billionaire has snuck computer chips into the vaccine should attract the attention of your health provider. Claiming that the Italian Army is going to invade or that this was all part of a UN sanctioned global takeover by shadowy forces is bonkers. Thinking that the Governor General is going to intervene is bizarre. Thinking the media are puppets of the Government and calling them terrorists is completely overblown.
And the threats of violence deserve an official response. The events of January 6 in Washington show what happens when you let deranged rhetoric circulate for too long.
The organisers are cruel grifters who prey on the disillusioned and the misinformed. People like this guy who took part in the Auckland protest and then a few days later tested positive for Covid. If he cannot understand how risky it is to have super spreader events using concentrated numbers of people who have not been vaccinated then he has no right to organise anything.
By all means there should be respect for freedom of speech although threats of violence should not be accepted. And I similarly have the right to express my strongly held view that the protesters are completely wrong and the organisers should be ashamed of themselves for plagiarising the language of the left for their own tawdry purposes.