Shepparton News

It’s time to tolerate the jabless

- John Lewis ● John Lewis is a senior journalist at The News.


After decades of lawn mowing and a lifetime of dog chats I’ve realised human beings are complicate­d.

They make strange decisions for the strangest of reasons.

Now, as we set foot on the pathway to the even stranger fifth dimension of the new COVIDnorma­l, our complicati­ons are coming to the fore like never before.

Seventy per cent of us in Victoria are now double vaccinated; that leaves 30 per cent who are not.

Some of these people might not understand the importance of being protected against COVID19, or how vital it is to protect their loved ones.

Some might not speak English well.

Others might just be plain misinforme­d — either through spending too much time surfing Facebook conspiracy platforms or watching Sky News videos that deny the existence of COVID-19 or encourage people to use hydroxychl­oroquine or ivermectin to protect themselves.

There must be hope these groups are open to education and persuasion.

However, there are others who suffer from the Ned Kelly effect — they just don’t like being told what to do and stick a finger up to any kind of authority.

Then, there is a small percentage of people who have never been vaccinated against anything, either because they mistrust ‘‘big pharma’’ or just science in general.

These people are beyond reach — and they, and us, must live with the consequenc­es of their choice. But there is a sixth group. These people are genuinely scared of putting laboratory-made chemicals into their body.

For whatever reason, they are deeply suspicious, even fearful, of being jabbed with something they have no control over.

It is easy to dismiss these people as paranoid over-thinkers who need to toughen up.

I watched a video shared on social media this week by someone I know, and with whom I have always had a trusting, respectful relationsh­ip.

The inner spiritual world is real to her, and in these matters I always try to step back and allow space for a friendship to develop outside of things that I might find difficult to follow.

In this week’s video she talked about how conf licted she became when asked for proof of vaccinatio­n by an employer.

She talked in a very real way of journeying to meet an ancient spirit and then an animal spirit who guided her towards accepting the vaccinatio­n ‘‘as the highest possible form of light technology’’.

Now I didn’t quite understand her justificat­ion, but there it was. This person thought deeply, overcame her fears and got jabbed.

There are undoubtedl­y others who have journeyed within in a similar way — and come up with a very different answer.

There are thousands now grappling in this conf licted state with their own fears about the vaccine — and they are not all spiritual travellers.

Police members, paramedics, medical profession­als, tradies and ordinary shopkeeper­s are among many who would normally be considered level-headed rational people — and who are refusing COVID vaccines.

Unless we want to live in a permanentl­y divided society, those of us who are about to start enjoying the privileges of being double vaccinated must now reach down into ourselves and find tolerance for those who genuinely fear the vaccine. They, and us, will have to live with the consequenc­es of their fears and if that means dedicating more hospital beds to the COVIDsick, then so be it.

We are a complicate­d species, living in an increasing­ly complex world often driven by technology and attitudes we have no control over.

So it is important to hold on to those things that are under our control — such as tolerance.

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 ?? ?? The COVID-19 vaccine: For some it’s a passport to freedom. For others it’s a bottle of fear and looming oppression. We now need a tolerance booster.
The COVID-19 vaccine: For some it’s a passport to freedom. For others it’s a bottle of fear and looming oppression. We now need a tolerance booster.

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