Covid – fact and opinion

Sir, – I would like to echo the points made by Margaret Goode (Letters, December 21st, and in response to Fintan O'Toole, "The three anti-vaccine types – egoists, paranoiacs and fascists", Opinion & Analysis, December 11th).

Many questions are arising at this stage of the pandemic, some of which have been raised by previous letter writers.

Deep analysis of statistical data and ethical questions regarding vaccine mandates are not being addressed by mainstream media. This lack of good journalism, I believe, is forcing many questioning people to turn to alternative platforms for information. This is indeed a very dangerous situation as it is polarising two extreme positions.

Not everyone who asks legitimate questions is a conspiracy theorist.

People who have been injured by vaccinations deserve not to be isolated and judged. Those who have concerns are regularly deemed to be selfish and uncaring of the general good by others who occupy the moral high ground. Relationships and even families are being divided by this vacuum.

When will media cease to only echo the groupthink which seems to have emerged since March 2020? The constant catastrophic predictions, whipping up incredible levels of fear and anxiety, are in themselves very toxic – maybe even more harmful than Covid. I look forward to seeing a change in this situation. – Yours, etc,



Co Wicklow .

Sir, – Earlier this year (April 7th), The Irish Times editorial view on Covid stated that the issue of Covid passports is "fraught with problems, including potential breaches of human rights, so any system must be carefully calibrated to balance individual rights – including the rights to privacy and bodily integrity – with society's wish to reopen. That means, for example, not allowing vaccine certs to become a route to de facto mandatory vaccination."

Less than a year later (December 22nd), the editorial stance of the liberal paper of record paper appears diametrically opposed to the initial view adopted.

Specifically, are we to take it that The Irish Times now supports vaccine certs as a route to de facto mandatory vaccination: “The need for measures to encourage vaccinations is more essential than ever – vaccine sceptics, of whatever persuasion, need to understand that there will be consequences as a result of non-vaccination, whether only denial of access to a concert or hospitality venue. Such restrictions are as much about driving the vaccination campaign as immediate safety at these venues”.

What a difference a year makes. – Yours, etc,



Sir, – Fintan O'Toole's piece about the effect of the pandemic on our children deserves to be read out in all places of worship, every classroom, printed in large letters and displayed in every doctor's surgery, and pasted to walls for the public to read ("This Christmas, remember what children give to us", Opinion & Analysis, December 21st). As a grandfather to nine children, from 11 to 23 years, Fintan has made me realise how much I take them for granted. – Yours, etc,