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There should never be a second national lockdown – the consequences are simply not worth it

 

WHAT an irresponsible, scare-mongering headline from yesterday’s Sunday Mirror which trumpeted on its front page: “We’re heading for lockdown next month.”

This was based on a call from David King – the head of the government-hating left-wing so-called Independent SAGE group – pontificating that “we are nowhere near the point” where schools can be safely opened.

He argued that sending our deprived kids back to full-time education “will put us right back”, leading to a second national lockdown.

But that damaging rhetoric was not backed up by any discernible facts, in stark contrast to very real research conducted by a member of the government’s official SAGE advisory body.

Professor Russell Viner – president of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health – says a comprehensive study carried out in 100 UK institutions on 20,000 teachers and pupils shows there is “very little evidence” coronavirus is transmitted in schools.

There should never be a second national lockdown of this country – the consequences to lives, livelihoods and our health are simply not worth it.

Over 139,000 jobs were lost in June, according to the Insolvency Service, and that’s before the end of Rishi Sunak’s government furlough scheme.

Close to 200,000 over-50s have dropped out of the workforce altogether, with limited prospects of being able to return.

Over 30,000 folk are living with interminable pain waiting for hip and knee operations. There are 40,000 facing cancelled cataract surgery and nearly 10,000 awaiting hernia repairs.

Eating disorders and mental health issues are soaring.

And you know I have been talking for months about the ticking cancer time bomb that could well result in more deaths than those from coronavirus.

Yes, Covid-19 is a risk. No one is trying to deny that.

But is it a risk worth cancelling our lives for, with all the health and economic and social consequences that come with that?

How odd that few in the Boris-hating liberal media – so desperate to track statistics when we were struggling in the early days of the pandemic – want to trumpet excellent news today.

The number of people in hospital with Covid has fallen 96 per cent since the peak.

We have this damned disease relatively under control.

What’s at loose at the moment is irrational fear, pushed along by leaders like Nicola Sturgeon, Sadiq Khan and the Independent SAGE group who want to stoke division and misery for their own political gain.

However, there is simply no logical reason not to return to the office, go shopping on the high street, visit restaurants, use public transport or travel overseas using the agreed air bridges.

And the prospect of keeping schools closed for a moment longer next month will do untold damage to a generation that is already going to be paying for the economic catastrophe caused by Covid for most of their lives.

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