Boris Johnson’s strong and stable Tory government, after 100,000+ Covid deaths (the worst death toll in the world), and more than a year after some other countries dealt with the border issue, has decided to shut the UK’s borders (in a specific and limited way). It has taken multiple incoming variants of the virus to force this decision, so as opposition leader Kier Starmer put it, the proposed measure is far too little, too late.
It comes across as little more than a vaccuous PR stunt, a token geture, to give a signal to the public that the government is reacting. The problem is, everyone can see that it’s too late, and it’s not enough. Everyone can see they are only reacting now, shutting the door long after the horse has bolted. Other countries took hold of the issue quickly, so why couldn’t we? It’s embarassing.
One suspects the truth is that shutting the UK’s borders for medical reasons, is sadly incompatible with erecting trade barriers for Brexit reasons. Taking back control, eh, not all it’s cracked up to be is it?
James Cleverly (lol) of the Foreign Office, has defended the plan to quarantine visitors from 33 countries in UK ‘quarantine hotels’ at this pathetically late stage, with none of the hoteliers having been properly consulted or having confirmed any concrete plans whatsoever, and all this with the virus already rampant on our shores.
Where is the urgency? Where is the sense of criticality? Only now, after all this time, and three deadly peaks, a vague feeling of “maybe we should do something about infection crossing our borders?”, has come about, which is all the more staggering considering the preceding four-year obsession about controlling our borders.