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Power-drunk on Covid

Dear Sir,

I admit my recent doubts about Bermuda's ambition to return to normal. These doubts sprang from what I perceived as a collective depreciation of the value of civil liberties, which have accrued the greatest benefits to our lives and livelihood. Liberties still unreturned by a Covid-myopic government, even as the threat diminishes.

But my doubts were given a pause by recent events and experiences:

1, The video of Bermudians out on the water having fun this past weekend (June 12 and 13). Aside from the eager-beaver coastguard, it was a notable "bugger off" signal to Messrs Burt, Wilson and the rest of the Covid cabal

Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, and David Burt, the Premier, at a Covid-19 media briefing (File photograph by Akil Simmons)

2, A shift in public sentiment so noticeable that a previously non-existent Opposition decided to take a chance of calling for Bermuda’s reopening

3, The crowds of people dining out and congregating at restaurants, and if you’ve tried, how difficult it can be to get your desired reservation. Even a homebody like me now looks forward to a weekend dine-out

4, Delay tactics by the Premier of his own quarantine policy. In his own words "..our full effort must be at the border, focused on keeping dangerous variants out of Bermuda and successfully containing them if they arrive". The officials are going to ensure a full effort to protect us by delaying (again) the full effort. For someone who was previously so brazen to now start pulling punches is at least a small step in the right direction

These are good signs but there is still considerable distance to go. Many people are reticent about returning to normal. The lie sold here is that we must remain restricted to avoid future restrictions. Others have maintained a constant finger wag at every person they deem a deviant — midnight runners, cyclists, anyone who decides they don’t need a vaccine.

The most raucous resort to name-calling without knowing what they’re talking about — selfish “covidiots” or selfish anti-vaxxers. That lot will undoubtedly find another object of their “tsk tsk” affection as time passes. And, of course, Kim Wilson wants to approve summer camps and David Burt pulls a Game of Thrones warning that winter is coming. The Covid cabal is still very power-drunk, deliriously so.

But more questions are being asked by an increasingly sceptical public and disapprovals are being voiced openly.

For those still on the fence regarding the need for government coercion, here’s something to think about — force is superfluous when facing a threat. People have a vested interest in their own wellbeing and don't require a distant and disconnected bureaucracy to force them to do what’s best — and, yes, that includes taking a vaccine.

The freedom to choose is messy, but it is better than whatever the Government plans for us, which as the saying goes: those plans are often mistaken but never in doubt.

My message to the Government: if what you’re doing is with sincere concern for my wellbeing, thank you, but do me a favour and love me less.

ANTHONY DONAGHY

Pembroke, Bermuda

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Published June 22, 2021 at 8:39 am (Updated June 22, 2021 at 8:39 am)

Power-drunk on Covid

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