Things are a little crazy right now
November 10, 2021
I’m sure everyone is aware of the protests that happened yesterday. I watched them from the comfort of my home, and didn’t feel the need to visit this particular march on Parliament. There was one thing at yesterday’s protests that really struck me. The protesters, under the banner of the Freedoms and Rights Coalition created by "Apostle" Brian Tamaki, have been asking for our best protections against people dying of COVID to be removed - lockdowns, vaccine mandates, MIQ, and all other restrictions. A frequent message throughout the day was about the government needing to listen to the public - the speakers outside parliament talked about how a government should heed the people.
But what the protesters seem to have not noticed is that they’re not representative of "the people", or the voice of "the public". They’re not the majority in New Zealand, just a loud minority, with big motorbikes and crazy signs, religious proclamations, swastikas, threatening looking hangman’s nooses, tennis balls (opens new window) thrown at parliament calling for Jacinda Ardern to hang, and even someone biting a policeman in Auckland. A majority of New Zealanders support vaccination - indeed, a majority have chosen to be vaccinated. And the data clearly shows that those who have been vaccinated in New Zealand are much less likely to become ill from COVID.
As always, the best advice is to trust experts - and by experts I don’t mean Deanna Copeland, a naturopath who last week wrote an article (opens new window) for the Otago Daily Times telling readers that to protect against viruses such as the flu they should eat "garlic, mushrooms, onions, turmeric, thyme and oregano" for their immune-boosting effect. The idea of boosting your immune system with certain foods is just nonsense. Your immune system is either compromised, in which case go and see your GP, or it’s not - in which case it doesn’t need boosting. In fact, if these foods actually boost your immune system, it would be risky. As a great article on the website Massive Science says:
"there is no way to "boost" the immune system. The immune system is a complicated and dynamic network of cells, proteins, hormones, and other biological components. Even if it were possible to ratchet up such a complex system, you wouldn’t necessarily want to, because the immune system operates primarily by inducing inflammation... if a product were to truly "boost" the immune system, this mechanism would be amplified. We know what too much inflammation looks like: autoimmune disorders, inflammatory disease, and allergies."
Instead of trying to boost your immune system, go and get vaccinated, wear a mask, sign in with the tracing app and follow the rules. There was an Aucklander who made the news after deliberately infecting himself (opens new window) with COVID recently, and said to the media:
"I survived Covid unvaxxed but I just wanna say that I do not recommend this little experiment to anyone."