Anger with the government is appropriate, but Covid recklessness is not the right response

Posted on

Something happened over the weekend. No, I am not talking about Matt Hancock's resignation. I am talking about the release of interviewer anger with the government.

Andrew Marr was angry with Brandon Lewis yesterday, and rightly so.

Trevor Phillips revealed personal anguish and deep anger on ITV when also interviewing Brandon Lewis.

This morning Nick Robinson has laid into another minister on Radio 4, and that is not something that can be said too often.

But the corollary of this anger is that people are now indifferent to the instruction to comply with Covid regulations. And the new Health Secretary will, no doubt, release all remaining restrictions on 19 July.

This matters, because we have a rampant Covid variant in the UK. Look at the data:

And yes, I am aware that patients admitted are not rising to reflect the cases. That’s because we know many of those now infected are young people. The consequence is that cases are not as severe in the first instance as they were.

But we know there are massive risks for young people from long Covid.

And young people do also die from this.

And all this is on top of an NHS already in crisis because of the backlog of cases it is facing, which are at an all time record high.

There should be anger with this government. I just hope it is not so misdirected that we suffer an even more rampant wave of Covid than we might have done, but I fear we might. Anger needs a focus, and the government should be it. But it must not give rise to a recklessness that might be very costly indeed.