AFTER Novak Djokovic was ejected from Australia over his refusal to be vaccinated for Covid, he was interviewed by the BBC’s Amol Rajan. The tennis World No 1 said he didn’t mind missing tournaments over his vaccine refusal, adding: ‘That is the price I’m willing to pay.’ He distanced himself from the fabled anti-vax crowd but said that ‘I’ve always supported the freedom to choose what you put in your body’.
Imagine my surprise that, nearly three weeks since the Australian Open ended, Australia’s PM, Scott Morrison, has made precisely the same point, that whatever a person puts into his body is his choice, as all of us on the pro-freedom side of the fence have been saying all along. In answer to a question from a journalist on the side-effects of the jabs, Morrison essentially stated that anyone fool enough to take the jab accepted a personal responsibility to do so and therefore it’s their fault if they have adverse reactions.
‘We’re all responsible for our own health,’ Morrison answered. ‘When it comes to informed consent . . . then I’m ultimately responsible for what people do in their health treatment to me . . . the informed consent process provides the decision to the individual.’
Well, you could knock me down with a feather! When Djokovic was saying the same thing regarding his own healthcare, where was Scott Morrison to back him up? The Australian PM ironed out that ‘rules are rules’ and that ‘nobody is above those rules’ when he stated that you have to be doubly vaccinated to come to Australia.
In fact, despite Morrison’s antipathy to those who have experienced adverse reactions to the vaccines, he has been positively cheering the draconian restrictions in Victoria and Northern Territory, saying last November that ‘Victorians have earned their freedom’ by reaching the 90 per cent fully vaccinated rate.
This man has been one of the biggest cheerleaders of the vaccine rollout and has, in our post truth society, turned the suffering of millions of his citizens into a positive, calling it an ‘amazing achievement’. Yet now he is basically admitting that the jabs come with serious side-effects and is passing responsibility on to the citizens rather than the states which threatened their people with repercussions if they did not get inoculated.
I wonder whether Morrison will backtrack over his decision not to let Djokovic into the country to defend his Australian Open title or whether he doubles down. My guess is the latter and as for his personal responsibility speech, he’ll dodge that like all politicians do when they trip over their own feet.
What choice did he give Djokovic or the people in Australia who decided what was best for their bodies? None at all. It was either get vaccinated or lose your freedoms, your livelihood and your rights.
2022, so far, seems to be the year for turncoats and backtrackers.