Those in Ireland who depart from consensus are often isolated and ignored

Whether on efficacy of vaccines or economic management, dissent can show its worth

Infectious disease specialist  Prof Sam McConkey was criticised in many quarters for his perceived negativity when he urged caution on the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. File photograph: Getty

Infectious disease specialist Prof Sam McConkey was criticised in many quarters for his perceived negativity when he urged caution on the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. File photograph: Getty

A predilection for too much consensus or groupthink has often caused us harm in out country. Like buffalo, a significant number of Irish people prefer to run with the herd. That is absolutely fine and it is often the correct thing to do, as long the herd knows where it is going.

Yet those in Ireland who depart from the safety of consensus often find themselves isolated and ignored in matters of public debate. And that’s a pity.

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