Thursday, April 25, 2024
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Game, set and virtue signal


IT was wonderful to see my compatriot Sir Andy Murray take his first match in four years at Wimbledon on the opening day against a very determined opponent.  

But I was continually distracted by anger at what was really taking place. The ridiculous ‘rule of six’ for domestic dwellings is extant, weddings remain restricted and in order to bury a loved one there are still some Covid-related rules to be obeyed

On the other hand, Wimbledon is granted ‘experimental’ status, spectators sit cheek by jowl, players shout and people sing. It was almost as if we did not have a pandemic. 

Does any government minister, public health official or mainstream media reporter have an inkling of how angry people feel who have been unable to marry in the way they wanted, been prevented from comforting an elderly parent at a funeral, or discovered they have cancer too advanced to cure when they see the rich, the famous and the otherwise privileged flaunting their fun?  

Our priorities have become seriously inverted when major sporting events (‘let me through, I’m a UEFA official’ ) take precedence over the needs of the rest of the population. 

To add insult to the general injury of these sporting spectacles, Wimbledon was just a huge virtue-signalling pro-vaccination, NHS-clapping event.  

If ever there was an example of politics being firmly embedded in sports, this was it. I was, frankly, surprised that the tennis players were not ‘taking the knee’. But these are early days; Wimbledon has just started. 

First there was the standing ovation for Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert, the developer of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine, by virtue of whose invention presumably many of those attending Wimbledon were there.  

I do not doubt the ingenuity of Professor Gilbert, but surely both the DBE and the standing ovation are premature. We are less than a year into the rollout of a vaccine which is having dreadful side-effects on thousands of people and possibly killing some. Allegedly, two die for every three saved.* 

What is more, her vaccine may not even work. Andrew Marr, a recipient of the AstraZeneca jab, has reported that he has caught Covid-19. 

We hear how the vaccine has ‘broken the link’ between infection with the virus and death from Covid-19. It cannot be beyond the wit of the epidemiologists to see that there are any number of alternative explanations for this. By the time the vaccines were introduced, surely most of those who would have died from Covid-19 had already died. 

I had the AstraZeneca vaccine and required a day in bed. Had I not been working from home, I would certainly not have been working in my office for at least a week.  

I accepted the necessity for the vaccine because I need to travel for work. Months after having both doses I have not left Hull. It is also doubtful if the United States will accept the AstraZeneca vaccine for entry to their country. Thanks a bunch,  Professor Gilbert. 

The BBC commentators on the Murray match were in on the virtue-signalling act. We heard how there were many eminent surgeons in the Royal Box and the camera panned regularly to Henman’s Hump, where in large print the words ‘Thank You’ – presumably to the NHS – had been painted on the grass.  

I have no idea why eminent surgeons were there: Covid-19 is a medical condition. And what are we thanking the NHS for? The privilege of allowing us to save it? 

Then the commentators were exchanging information about which vaccine they had taken and how, to attend the event at Wimbledon, you had to prove you were double vaccinated.  

And how do you prove you are double vaccinated other than by having a vaccine passport? The introduction of vaccine passports had been denied – but we now have them – and their use for entry to sporting and entertainment events was also denied.  

The vaccine passport was introduced by stealth; they simply appear in the NHS app of those who have been vaccinated whether they requested one or not. And now the use of vaccine passports has been introduced by stealth at Wimbledon. It is not clear what the aims of the Wimbledon experiment are, but the Covid orthodoxy simply cannot lose.  

If it transpires to be a ‘super-spreader’ event, we are all back in lockdown. If it proves not to be, that will be taken as proof that the vaccines are working and that vaccine passports are a necessity. For the health fascists, this is a win-win. 


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Roger Watson
Roger Watson
Roger Watson is a Professor of Nursing.

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