Tue | Sep 28, 2021

Letter of the Day | Beware of intolerance

Published:Wednesday | August 4, 2021 | 12:06 AM

THE EDITOR, Madam:

The voices are getting louder, calling for persons who have not been vaccinated to be treated differently from people who are vaccinated. At first it started as a suggestion to incentivise persons to get vaccinated, in some cases, offering rewards. However, the narrative is increasingly shifting to ascribing blame on the unvaccinated, thereby justifying suggestions for them to be victimised by depriving them of normal entitlements as humans and citizens.

In a pandemic, it is understandable that persons will be fearful and will hold on to whatever is considered the best available advice for treating with what is seen as a huge challenge to our collective survival. However, to find solutions, we must avoid the temptation to think that there is only one solution, and that victimisation and intolerance of alternative perspectives will yield the positive outcomes that we seek. Collective survival always rests in people working together with mutual respect rather than sowing divisions by setting up one set of people against another.

When it comes to life and health, persons should be allowed to choose from the available options without being victimised or coerced.

There is also a moral element to it. Two of the most fundamental commandments that are known world over are: Thou shalt not kill, and Thou shalt not steal. Anyone who causes the death of their fellow men or causes them to be deprived of their time, property, or resources by imposing undue burdens on them are guilty of breaking these commandments and will have to give an account to God for doing so. God does not require anyone to victimise normal, healthy people, who are not proven to be spreading an infection more than others, by isolating them from society and depriving them of their right to live a normal life. Children of God should not support any such scheme.

FIGHT TOGETHER

Something does not seem to add up there. One would think that there is a greater likelihood for new variants developing as the organisms mutate to survive the new substances that are being used to destroy them. This is not to suggest that new substances should not be developed to fight these germs. It is pointing out that those who are supposedly not protected should not be blamed for the development of the variants or be blamed for jeopardising those who are protected.

Let us fight the scourge together, allowing alternative perspectives and innovations to continue, while we beware intolerance, as such approaches have never served to advance humanity but only to set us back.

MOSES MIGHTY