A short blog on the Novak Djokovic situation. The media, politicians & institutions involved should drop the charade that having recently had Covid makes any difference to this situation. It doesn’t really. Most societies globally, including Australian society, have been asked to make significant sacrifices during this global pandemic. At an individual level people have sacrificed their freedom and been asked to take vaccines that we know have side effects, sometimes nasty side effects.
I had very concerning side effects from my AstraZeneca vaccine, and I still went and had my second, and a booster from a different vaccine. I did that because I thought it was probably the right thing to do for myself. I was quite nervous, but I knew I didn’t really have a choice to make because I wanted to do what was right by others regardless of how I felt about it.
Some people are mourning family members who have died from the side effects. I consider those that have lost their lives in this way to be heroes. We have all been asked to make grave sacrifices because the evidence has been clear – if we get on with doing the right thing it will save the lives of people that most of us do not know and will never meet. That is the collective responsibility that we have been asked to participle in, and most of us have.
Whether Novak Djokovic is a transmission risk or not is irrelevant. This is about what it means culturally and socially to allow him, the best male tennis player of a generation, to compete when he is refusing to take collective responsibility. He is deciding to do what he thinks is best for him, and it is clear that he is not doing what is best for everybody else. In that situation, we should not hold him up as a cultural icon or sporting or sporting paragon.
As Rafael Nadal rightly points out it is his decision to make, but some decisions have consequences. The consequence for any elite sportsperson not having their vaccines should be that they cannot compete until the WHO decides that we are no longer in a Global Pandemic situation. In my opinion that includes all Premier League and England national team football players who I watch and cheer on regularly.
This short blog is available as a Twitter thread here: https://twitter.com/Si_Brewis_Says/status/1480546476812120064
feel free to share xx