SHOULD a man lose his job and be subjected to a flood of neurotic scorn because he shared opinions on the vaccines?
The worst part about Twitter’s trial of Maajid Nawaz, the LBC radio host axed last week after querying the use of booster jabs in the midst of the Omicron surge, is that I can’t find any statements he’s made about the vaccine which are not supported by research. You may say some of the tweets lack context, but that’s a different argument and one which might be better had with whoever it was at Twitter that decided on a 280-character limit.
Before Nawaz was sacked, he tweeted: ‘What we do know already, backed up by much academic research, is that mass-vaccination during a pandemic, with a jab that has not been studied for long-term side effects, could be doing more harm than good.’
His LBC colleague Iain Dale (author of Why Can’t We All Just Get Along . . . Shout Less. Listen More) replied with this peacemaking message: ‘Enough. What we do know already is that it’s dangerously irresponsible to tweet this kind of deranged rubbish. What it is designed to do is to sow seeds of doubt in people’s minds. What is more dangerous is not to have the jabs. Given you’ve had them, why do you tweet this garbage?’
Dale’s assertion that ‘What is more dangerous is not to have the jabs’ is certainly short on context. It may be true of certain age groups, but not all. Why no caveat? Or does Dale believe this statement to be a universal truth, and if so what the hell is he doing in journalism?
It’s a question I find myself asking again when I see that he’s posted some fatuous Facebook meme as if it were a profound and effective putdown of those who remain vaccine-free or express concern about vaccine risks and vaccine unknowns.
Yes, who’d have thought that people might be wary of taking a new medication from a corporation that has been granted immunity from liability?
An impression has been formed in British ‘journalism’ that Maajid Nawaz is ‘dangerous’ – well, for those who see the trade merely as a stepping stone to politics and who would therefore rather protect power than speak truth to it, yes, I imagine he does seem dangerous.
That establishment mating-call ‘the vaccinated must be punished’ is harder to justify when supplied with articles which show how many the vaccines have killed, and which the ‘dangerous’ Maajid Nawaz shares regularly on Twitter.
LBC itself seems to have followed the Labour Party’s trajectory in moving from being a respectable station into one that caters solely to virtue signalling middle-class graduates and socialists – is there even a distinction?
An LBC without Maajid Nawaz is a grim thought to consider. I think I’ll pass. I don’t much care to hear Nick Ferrari’s suggestions about what to do with the unvaccinated, or the imaginings of Shelagh Fogarty who suggests poisoning their coffee.
Wherever Maajid goes, at least from now on he’ll be his own man. From now on it will be him leading the conversation. And it won’t be quiet.