John MacDonald: It's time we banned all protests outside schools

John MacDonald,
Publish Date
Fri, 25 Feb 2022, 1:47pm
(Photo / NZ Herald)
(Photo / NZ Herald)

John MacDonald: It's time we banned all protests outside schools

John MacDonald,
Publish Date
Fri, 25 Feb 2022, 1:47pm

Doesn’t it blow you away how the anti-vaxxers can continue to reach new lows? 

Did you see those appalling people on the TV news last night? 

The anti-vaxxers who set themselves up at Tuahiwi School in North Canterbury yesterday when they got wind that the Prime Minister was visiting. 

They yelled at her and called her a “murderer”. Can you believe it? These people standing at a school telling the Prime Minister she’s a murderer! 

But they didn’t stop there. If you were watching the news last night you would’ve seen them getting into fisticuffs with a parent at the school when she realised one of the protesters was filming her kids. A TV reporter on the scene had to step in and break them apart. 

And you know I wasn’t surprised to see it come to that. I’m not sure I’d be able to control myself if I turned up at school and found these despicable anti-vaxxers outside with their nastiness and conspiracy theories. Not to mention filming my kids on their phones. 

And, from what I’ve read today, it seems these idiots weren’t even connected to the school. They just heard Jacinda Ardern was there, chucked their mickey mouse signs in the boot and shot down to the school. 

Signs saying “This is Child Abuse” and “The shot kills and all the lab rats died”. And, of course, the old “freedom” sign was there too. 

And that one is so laughable isn’t it? “Freedom” as long as you agree with their deranged thinking. 

What about freedom to come and go from school without paranoid freaks with nothing better to do, shoving their vileness in your face? 

And whatever you think of the Prime Minister - and I know some people have had enough of Jacinda Ardern - but yelling at her and calling her a murderer? That is way beyond the pale. It beggars belief, doesn’t it? 

But she’s a grown-up and she’s a politician and she’ll be used to dealing with that sort of carry-on. Nevertheless, it is appalling. 

But it’s the kids and the parents I’m standing up for today. And not just the kids and the parents at Tuahiwi School. I’m standing up for the kids and the parents at all the schools these clowns have been showing up at. 

And the teachers too. Let’s not forget about them. And the principals - like the one who was yelled at and called a “paedophile” by an anti-vaxxer recently. That was outside a school here in Canterbury. 

These people have just completely lost the plot. And they need to be stopped before something really terrible happens. 

Because the way they’re carrying on, they are creating situations that are becoming more and more concerning and dangerous. 

I was involved in a protest outside a school once. It was the primary school the kids were at and we held a protest to show support for the teachers who were having all sorts of problems with their pay because of the dickey Novopay payroll system. 

That was peaceful. We weren’t intimidating. And we were showing solidarity with the school. 

Unlike these awful, awful people peddling their conspiracy theories and making things extremely unpleasant for parents, teachers and the kids. They are despicable. 

And I think the best thing that could happen would be a blanket ban on protests outside schools. 

All protests - not just anti-vax, everything. 

So how would that happen? I was thinking about it earlier and I think it would need to come from local councils because schools are generally in areas where roads and things are the responsibility of the council - not Waka Kotahi or NZTA. 

And yes, it would mean protests like the one I was involved in over the Novopay shambles couldn’t happen. But so be it. 

I think it’d be a price well worth paying, if it meant our school communities didn’t have to put up with what’s going on at the moment. 

Can you imagine the outcry if outfits like McDonalds or Coca Cola, or tobacco companies, sent their promotional teams to hang outside schools? 

They wouldn’t get away with it. 

So why are we letting these nasty anti-vaxxers congregate outside schools selling their poison? 

We shouldn’t be. And they should be banned from doing what they’re doing. Like I say, they are despicable. 

So that might give you an idea of where I’m at on this. What about you? 

Do you think it is acceptable for anti-vaxxers to protest outside schools like they have been here in Canterbury, and elsewhere? 

Or, like me, do you utterly condemn what they’re doing and do you agree that it’s time we banned all protesting outside schools?