Empty Restaurant - Florida Keys

Overwhelmingly, I think it’s a massive “Yes” for me, and not just for travel either. You should also need it to enter a sports arena, maybe even just to have a coffee in the local café. Of course, this should only apply once the vaccine is available for everybody.

Don’t get me wrong, I firmly believe that if you don’t want to take the jabs, that’s fine by me. It most certainly is your choice, and if you make that decision, that’s ok. But don’t come anywhere near me, not on the bench next to me, not on my flight, and certainly not next to Mrs B. She doesn’t need the risk of being contaminated by someone who doesn’t feel the wish to safeguard themselves and more importantly, others.

Yes of course, there are those who medically cannot take the vaccine. Obviously, provision would have to be made to not exclude them.

My country of origin has certainly defied the odds and introduced a vaccination programme that is the envy of most. Well I suppose Boris had to get one thing right in his miserable tenure. Even in little old North Cyprus, where I now live, us over 65s have long since had both doses. It was the Chinese one – but frankly, I couldn’t have cared less if it was manufactured on the planet Zog. 

I’ve heard the arguments against a vaccine passport. “It’s discriminatory.” No it isn’t. When I started travelling to far-away places years ago, I had to get vaccinated against various obnoxious diseases, like yellow fever, or I simply would not have been allowed to go. That is not me being discriminated against, more like common sense.

Seaworld Orca Show
Seaworld, Orlando

“It’s against human rights to force me to have a medical intervention!” Get a life, no it isn’t, because nobody is forcing anybody to do anything. It’s a choice. A choice we all have to make. Make ourselves less of a risk by getting the jab, or make ourselves less of a risk by adhering to the social restrictions like lockdowns, which are proving to be not only economical destructive, but a huge hazard to mental health.

“I don’t want to get a blood clot”. You don’t want to get Covid-19 either. Trust me on that one. You have more chance of winning the lottery than getting a blood clot.

“It’s all a government plot to inject me with stuff so they can keep control of me.” Yeh, like your mobile phone and social media ramblings don’t already let the whole world know who you are, where you are, what you’re doing, and what you’re thinking. It’s already happened, so move on.

Roger Bara

Once again, it’s down to one word: choice. Make yourself less likely to die with Covid, and, as science will likely prove, less likely to pass it on to others, or stay permanently socially isolated. 

A total and utter no-brainer.

My vaccine passport 

Hell, what?  

Sure, I understand both the medical and economical importance of COVID-19 vaccinations. Being an owner of such a passport would open up the gates to the world and normality again. 

It already works in Israel, since February 2021: people with such passports/certificates, anyway, some digital ID, have common access to cafes, restaurants, malls, various social events, etc. 

In Iceland and Estonia one can travel across the borders freely having got such an ID, too. 

The major goal is to restore the freedom to travel, to do business, to live, after all. Sounds good and acceptable. 

On the other hand, such a thing doesn’t look too vegetarian: it is suspected in China they plan to allow entering the country only those who had vaccinated with a Chinese-made stuff. This looks like protectionism and unfair competition. Sure, lots of tourists would just turn away China as possible tourist destination, not a big deal: The Great Wall, the Forbidden City and that’s basically it when it comes to big tourist attractions there. 

But what would business travelers to China opt to do? Risking their businesses? Possibly. Or choose the Chinese vaccine for the sake saving them? 

Boeing 767 Pushkin

There’s also a question of personal data but I’m fine with it. In our digitally omnipotent world if the state wants to track somebody down and control him/her it would easily do it without issuing the vaccine passports: too many other digital touch-points are available. 

There’s also an issue of social disparity because some experts believe only wealthy countries’ residents could afford it. This is true – but this is true to so many other unfair things in the world so I can still live with it.   

Our Rusuk Blog writer Sergey

The only problem is the introduction of common standards so those digital IDs / vaccine passports, whatever you call it, could be technically acceptable in the most countries of the world. 

So yes, this is mostly a good thing, to me. Let’s keep it this way when it comes to the implementation. 

Vaccine Passport – Yes or No?

Sometimes old age blows… but other times it sucks. Example: Just when you think you got it figured out, along comes Covid and shows you just how little you know. It never occurred to me that people would politicize a virus that kills. You would think everybody would be on the same page: we must stop this now so we can get back to life.

Nope, I have learned that there is absolutely nothing that cannot be turned into a political talking point. In Brazil they have a President who thinks only sissies wear mask. All the sissies go home and don’t give their families a deadly virus, while the manly men kill theirs. That’s not working out so well.

The Americans are no better. While we did replace our President who held similar views, the damage has been done and many died unnecessarily. Another difference is that Hospitals in the US have the staff (kinda’), supplies (sorta’), and the beds (mostly) to deal with the crisis. I read where folks in Brazil are simply being sent home.

Now, if you’re such a bad-ass that you don’t need no stinkin’ mask, what’s your response to a Vaccine Passport going to be? You already know. The Governor of the US State of Florida, Ron DeSantis, a Trumpists, signed an executive order on 2 April prohibiting the use of Covid-19 vaccine Passports in the state. Not just governments but also any private business.

So, want to enroll your child in school? Great, you must show proof your child was vaccinated against childhood diseases except Covid. That’s the law. The Governor says vaccine passports would “create two classes of citizens based on vaccinations”.

I’m not really sure how the Trumpists plan to enforce some of their anti-vaccine passport laws. Consider this: The Port of Miami is a major cruise terminus with millions of passengers a year embarking on their Caribbean vacations. Cruise ships are going to have enough problems enticing passengers back as it is. It is only a matter of time before Covid runs amok on one of these enclosed ships.

And how will an airline respond when another country requires vaccine passports before boarding? Clearly Florida, and I assume other Trumpists run states, will be forced to make exceptions or simply not have international flights anymore. You can even imagine a situation where an airline will require a passport to arrive in another American State. So what happens if New York says you must have one and Texas forbids it?

Moon & Sunrise Over The Atlantic

The free movement of commerce between the states is written into the Constitution. You can already guess that this dispute will wind-up in the US Supreme Court: You know, the kangaroo court with three Trumpists on the bench. I have no clue how the actual Republican Justices will respond but this could create a constitutional crisis, again.

For our next can of worms, may I introduce the Concert, or Baseball game, or major Convention? Many of these big conventions run a week and attract twenty-thousand people. Perhaps the staff working in these petri dishes want to kill their Grand Mothers. There is no chance, none, that you are going to get that many people into a stadium and not have somebody die a month later from Covid they caught while watching the Bucs play Football. Maybe Ron DeSantis can pray about it; that will fix it.

Photograph of Dean Lewis

Living overseas, I find myself defending my tribe from time to time. I do love my home country but damn, this is just plain stupid. Again.