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Lockdown levels around the country were raised again on Sunday morning after further community spread of Covid 19.
This now-current situation seems to have been brought about by at least two people clearly breaching their obligations to remain isolated from others. One went to work at a fast-food restaurant and another visited a gym whilst infectious.
Our beloved Prime Minister has, on many occasions, told us that we should not blame those who have caught CV19 for the problems we face and that is very true. However, I think it's about time we started blaming and censuring those who fail to follow directives and, in doing so, risk spreading the disease further and thus risk the lives of the vulnerable.
Whilst Jacinda is now a victim of her own PR people and the image they have created of a PM who is empathetic, forgiving and caring, it's time she manned up a little, or a lot.
In society we have rules, laws and conventions that are designed to ensure that one person's actions don't unreasonably affect others.
Some of these rules are simply designed to ensure that one's "quality of life" is not adversely affected by the actions of others. A great example are the laws that stop us from making loud noises late at night. Nobody ever died as the result of a neighbour playing their stereo at full volume for hours at 2am in the morning but it's still against the law because it unreasonably degrades other people's enjoyment of life.
At the other end of the spectrum we have laws that say you must not assault or kill other people. Clearly such things are not acceptable in any way because no person has the right to endanger or terminate the life of another.
So why is it that, when told to stay home and self-isolate, a person who chooses to ignore that directive and, by associating with others whilst infected and infectious with CV19, endagers the lives of countless others, escapes any form of punishment?
If I play my stereo too loud at 2am I can expect a stiff fine, even though nobody's life is endangered. Ignore directives to isolate and instead endanger the health and perhaps even lives of others by goomg to work at a fast-food restaurant or spending time at the gym and there's no punishment, not even a fine?
Where is the parity? Where is the equity?
I'm sure Jacinda will say "we should rely on people to do the right thing" but clearly that's not true. If that were true we would have no need for a police force, speed cameras or other elements of law *enforcement*.
The reality is that although the vast majority of people can be relied on to do the right thing, there is always an element within any group which prefers instead to ignore the rules, conventions, laws and good practice that protects us all. Without enforcement and penalty, those few will ruin things for everyone.
If Jacinda really has empathy, sympathy and an honest concern for the poeple of New Zealand she needs to implement the same sort of hard-nosed penalties that other countries around the world have seen fit to instigate as a way of ensuring that the "bad apples" within our ranks don't get to thumb their nose at the rules with impunity.
What do readers think?
Is it fair that you get fined for playing your stereo too loud but you can endanger the lives of countless others by ignoring directives to self-isolate without any punishment or penalty at all?
NZ has been very lucky of date and I have a feeling that we forget how CV19 has already cost over two and a half million lives around the world. Even one life lost to the reckless and unacceptable actions of those who would ignore the rules is one life too many and, if I were in charge, would carry a charge of involuntary manslaughter at the very least if it were tracked down to an act of breaching isolation rules.
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