On Friday in the Federal Court of Australia, and after CoB, the Minister for Immigration, the Hon. Alex Hawke, cancelled Novak Djokovic’s Visa for a second time after the defending Australian Open Champion had earlier in the week won his case against the Government cancellation of his Visa for denial of procedural fairness.
But having lost the first round, the Government was not going to give up. On Saturday the Minister released the Government’s written arguments as to why Djokovic should be removed from Australia. It seems that the Government is not concerned that the tennis star could be a health risk because of his unvaccinated-natural immunity status – well, with thousands of reported daily cases around the country, the government could hardly argue that one more presence would make the slightest difference and, indeed, as Sancho pointed out in the OT, how the Government would be able to argue that the medical exemption from vaccination for natural immunity could only work for Australian citizens and permanent residents and not to sojourning others would be a masterstroke of legal argument. No, the reasoning that the Minister is relying on to remove Djokovic from Australia is that he could be a bad influence on the nation by encouraging Australians not to be vaccinated or continue with their vaccination programs or by encouraging the risk of public dissent among so-called “anti-vaxxers.”
So the risk that Novak Djokovic poses to our nation is because the Minister considers that a heterodox view of the Government’s vaccine policy and creating the possibility of personal decision-making on whether to have a vaccine could give succour to those in the Australian community who possibly share this non-government view.
As I write this post the arguments in the Federal Court go on; we shall see sometime Sunday afternoon whether the Djoker will be free to play in the 2022 Australian Open. Instead, this post is about a government fig leaf.
Since the vaccine roll out began the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, has continually informed Australians that the decision to be vaccinated for Covid-19 is entirely theirs because there is no mandatory vaccination policy in this country and because of Australians’ right under law to informed consent for all medical treatments. Despite this and in the full knowledge of the Commonwealth the individual States have endeavoured by coercion to ensure that vaccination for Covid-19 is not voluntary. To bring this about, jobs and livelihoods, access to products and services, including health and education, and the authority to do what one likes including to travel across state borders have been threatened and/or denied to ensure that the right card is chosen in the Government’s three card vaccination trick.
So despite his claims to respect the rights of all Australians to determine their own health needs according to law, the façade has fallen and, like a large African predator finally breaking cover after continually feigning disinterest in a grazing wildebeest, the Novak Djokovic migration case has shown that Scott Morrison and the Coalition Government is fully committed to all the draconian controls that the State Premiers have used to force up vaccination rates, which is why he has not once condemned any of the controls that the Premiers have used on Australians. The Novak Djokovic case has shown that under Scott Morrison Australia does in fact have mandatory vaccination.
In tatters is the Liberal Party claim to being the party of individual rights and freedoms; the fig leaf has fallen.