Many readers may have been, like me, aghast at the foolish people demonstrating against the mandatory wearing of masks in the UK. This will become a requirement on July 24; failure to comply will get you a fine of up to £100.
Interviews with the idiots demonstrating in London’s Hyde Park Corner brought out such absurdities as “protecting their rights”, “it’s a free country”. No one was asking why they would have to wait another four days for this eminently sensible measure to be brought in.
They were all wearing clothes. Not one was exercising their ‘right” to be naked in public. Perhaps they were aware of the two nudity-related offences you can be arrested for: Outraging Public Decency and Indecent Exposure.
While they were protesting, they could have added a few more violations of their inalienable “rights”. Car drivers and their passengers are forced to wear seat belts, even though they are only 45% effective at preventing fatal injuries for front seat passengers. Why should the government tell people what to do in in the privacy of their own car?
Consider the motorcycle rider, forced to wear a helmet. Helmets are only 35 percent effective in preventing fatality and deprive the rider of the pleasure of feeling the wind in their face and through their hair.
And both car drivers and motorcyclist alike are forced to give up their freedom of choice and stop or go at the fickle command of red and green lights that would be better off decorating a Christmas tree.
Let us spare a thought for the dog owners amongst us. Dogs in the UK must be kept on a lead anywhere near roads, car parks, play areas. And a calendar is an important item for the dog walker as their charges must be on a short lead of no more than 2 meters between 1 March and 31 July. If you want to know the time, ask a policeman but I don’t know who you ask if you want to know the date. And if you happen to meet an elderly woman with a regal attitude and a corgi, make sure that it is not the Queen. It is a serious offense to allow your pet to mate with one of the Queen’s corgis.
So, the United Kingdom is not a free country. You cannot do what you like; there are laws governing every aspect of life. And this, of course is how it should be. It is the same in every other civilized country. The demonstrators should understand that masks are intended to protect other people. It is not certain that they are effective, but against the unforgiving virus, every little bit helps.
The UK is a free country and citizens obeying their government will help to keep it both free and virus free.