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LETTERS: We must learn to live with COVID

NOW that Queensland has had its own COVID outbreak (C-M, Aug 24), hopefully our Premier and Chief Health Officer will stop banging on about "eradication" and "zero community transfer".

Both are a pipedream at this point.

Eradication is impossible without a working vaccine, and unlikely even if we had one; the virus is here to stay.

As for zero community transfer, we have never had it (nor has anyone else).

Community transfer continues via asymptomatic people.

Even our much-vaunted, "X days without a new case" is a furphy.

All that means is that of all the test results delivered on a given day, none were positive.

Not everyone in the state is being tested, and so we are having new cases every day - we just aren't detecting them.

Lockdown was necessary to give our medical system time to ramp up its facilities and be able to deal with patients. That has been done.

We now need to open up and live with the virus, which will involve suburban lockdowns, social distancing for years and the occasional emergency action.

We do not need hard border shutdowns or ludicrous restrictions that go on forever.

The new normal means living with this virus for the foreseeable future.

Shane Budden, Kenmore


THE Palaszczuk government has made "jobs, jobs, jobs" its mantra but it now seems to be doing everything to stifle the economy from recovering.

So much for jobs when there is better political capital from saving us all from the dreaded COVID-19.

A.E. Ranson, West End


THE only part of Les de Kretser's excellent analysis of Queensland Labor's re-election prospects (Letters, Aug 24) I found problematic was his contention that Queensland voters are "far too smart" to be fooled by any politicisation of the pandemic response.

In 2012, Queenslanders gave Campbell Newman an overwhelming mandate to arrest the state's inexorable slide towards bankruptcy.

When voters realised, however, that this involved some hard decisions and personal pain, they revoked his commission in 2015 and confirmed that decision in 2017.

Terry Birchley, Bundaberg






IT WAS uplifting to read Andrew Bolt's take on Prime Minister Scott Morrison's view to make it mandatory for all Australians to receive the COVID-19 vaccine

when it is delivered, but who then back-pedalled on what was seen as a dictatorial stance.

No doubt I will be one of the first to take the jab, as I have with the current flu vaccine.

It is to be hoped that at least 65 per cent of Australians follow suit so immunity can be achieved.

Wars are won by a great many soldiers, not just one or two heroes, though Hollywood tends to paint a different scenario.

Stephen Kazoullis, South Brisbane


I'M A big Andrew Bolt fan, and he makes a valid point accusing politicians of bullying Australians into submission.

I'm also a big fan of vaccination, provided it's thoroughly tested and we're not used as guinea pigs.

If people refuse a safe and proven vaccination, there should be consequences.

Having said that, large numbers of  people seem incapable or unwilling to self-regulate.

Just think how many breaches of COVID-19 protocols have occurred even with strict policing.

So have we become so foolishly selfish that we'd rather risk the nation's health than put ourselves out a teeny bit?

Richard Marman, Meridan Plains



IF EVERYONE thought like Andrew Bolt, most of us would still be suffering from polio, diphtheria, whooping cough, and all manner of other infectious diseases.

Just roll your sleeve up, receive a jab, and then relax.

Peter Corran, Wakerley






IT WAS positive to read the proposal to provide troubled kids on drugs with help programs instead of just sending them to jail (C-M, Aug 24).

Many of these juveniles come from dysfunctional families so getting involved with drugs is a way to make them feel better and be part of a group.

Locking them up does not solve their problems but trains them to become criminals.

The diversionary program Street University, funded by the Tedd Noffs Foundation, to treat these kids is a great idea and much better than incarceration.

Lesley Brandis, Camp Hill


THE radical plan to decriminalise drugs for kid crooks is the craziest idea yet.

Unless these young crims learn there are consequences for their illegal actions, they are going to continue to think that taking the easy way through life at the expense of others is the only way to go.

Queensland already has a number of "woke" judiciary who apply the softly-softly approach to young offenders so the last thing we need is for the law to be changed to condone what is already happening.

Phil Greenhill, Bellbird Park










COLUMNIST Peter Gleeson's conclusion that our state political leaders should not "ignore" the Catholic vote (C-M, Aug 24) sounds sensible.

Of course there will be those who will vehemently remind us that church and politics don't mix.

But, as a voter and a Catholic, I have never accepted that statement.

This is not because I think the Church is greater than the State, or vice versa, but simply because both are real influences in my everyday life. They are necessarily intertwined.

Having a non-religious attitude, I think, is just as significant and influential in politics as is having one.

I would argue that the real point for discussion about church and politics is one of convenience.

Isn't it easier for one to vote according to what one wants or would like to see rather than be constrained by a religion-based/moral conscience?

Governments are assured of re-election if they give the majority of the voters what they want - and this could include free abortion, no-guilt euthanasia, or whatever other social and moral issue is popular.

More baptised Catholics these days seem to be becoming more amenable to these issues as the world becomes more secular.

And so it appears that "non-church" supporters have very little to worry about the Church's influence in the upcoming election anyhow.

Richard K. Tiainen, Holland Park West






I WAS intrigued to read that the entry standards for our universities have been raised in keeping with increased demand for courses (C-M, Aug 22).

However, I note this is only for local students.

When overseas students are allowed back into the country will they too face higher entry standards, such as being sufficiently fluent in English in order to meet the increased academic demands the new entry criteria will now demand?

No doubt the universities will engage in all kinds of devious academic gymnastics in order to avoid honestly answering this question.

Crispin Walters, Chapel Hill






COLUMNIST Kylie Lang (C-M, Aug 22) and correspondent Carol da Costa-Roque (Letters, Aug 24) have aired different views on who is responsible for teachers not breaking up a brawl at Calamvale Community College.

I would like to ask what responsibility parents bear for not setting standards of common decency for their offspring. That's the job of parents.

Children need to learn the difference between right and wrong and respect for others when they are very young.

Barbara Kavenagh, Buddina






AS FLATTERED as I am to be named by columnist Peter Gleeson as the "hot tip" to take on the top job at Sunshine Coast Regional Council

(C-M, Aug 24), I would like to clarify that I haven't applied for the role and won't be leaving Redland City Council.

I wish Mayor Mark Jamieson and the Sunshine Coast Regional Council well in their search for a new CEO.

Andrew Chesterman, CEO, Redland City Council




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Originally published as We must learn to live with COVID