“Piss off” the unvaccinated, this is the strategy Emmanuel Macron intends to apply to face this new phase of the pandemic.
There was little doubt about his government’s intentions. The centerpiece of its policy in the fight against COVID-19 is to transform the health passport into a vaccination passport.
Thus, it would no longer be possible to substitute proof of vaccination with a negative result for a recent screening test to frequent places such as restaurants or use the high-speed train.
But by responding to a reader of the Parisian, a nurse who recalled that resuscitation beds were largely occupied by unvaccinated patients, the French president shared his thoughts like never before.
” Me, I’m not for pissing off the French. I plague the administration all day long when it blocks them. Well, there, the unvaccinated, I really want to piss them off. And so, we will continue to do so, until the end. This is the strategy. “
Emmanuel Macron even went further by adding
that an irresponsible person is no longer a citizen.
With less than 100 days of the first round of the presidential election, the president’s words were certainly calculated. At the risk of alienating part of the electorate, the Elysee is betting that the president’s speech will echo the feelings of a majority of the more than fifty million French people adequately vaccinated.
The readers, the French who live their daily life without being permanently connected to social networks, they were not at all shocked. If we gave them the floor, maybe they would use even stronger words David Doukhan, editor-in-chief of the political service of the Parisian.
But the words used by the head of state also aroused a lot of criticism. On the right and on the left, many people accuse Emmanuel Macron of further fueling tensions within French society.
Some analysts and politicians, for example, have not failed to point out that the terms chosen contradict the words formulated by the president during an interview with TF1 in December.
There are words that can hurt and that’s unacceptable, respect is part of political life, and I learned it afterwards, he had said at the time of some of his past statements.
The words of the President of the Republic are unworthy remarks, irresponsible remarks, contemptuous remarks, said Damien Abad, member of the Republicans group in the National Assembly, where debates on the vaccine passport bill were also suspended for a second consecutive night after the publication of the article in the Parisian.
Vulgarity does nothing, added the candidate of rebellious France, Jean-Luc Mélenchon.
These words are not just those of a president. They were also held by a politician who has still not formalized his candidacy for the election, but who in the same interview declared that he had
desire and that there was no
The form and substance
Beyond the declaration and reactions, questions arise about the strategy chosen by the French government.
The pressure exerted on the unvaccinated, who once the passport project is adopted will see their access to public places greatly limited, will it be sufficient to face the current wave of contamination?
On Tuesday, French health authorities reported 270,000 new infections in 24 hours, after several days of announcing more than 200,000 new daily cases in late December and early January.
On December 27, three days before Quebec confirmed the reimposition of a curfew, the French government announced its new measures to face the wave.
Among the announcements: compulsory teleworking three days a week for trades that allow it, a limit set at 2,000 people for large indoor gatherings, the ban on consuming drinks or food in the cinema or in transport.
The option of a curfew for the evening of December 31, which had circulated in the media, was ruled out. The postponement of the return to class was also rejected, a decision which drew criticism from the government.
The strategy, since repeated by Emmanuel Macron, has been reiterated by Prime Minister Jean Castex.
Priority to vaccination, complementing it with appropriate measures, did he declare.
In an interview with TurnedNews.com, Patrick Pelloux, president of the Association of emergency physicians of France, ensures that the country has enough hospital beds to face the crisis at the moment. According to’OECD, France has 5.8 beds per 1000 inhabitants, compared to 2.5 in Canada.
However, Dr Pelloux specifies that the French health system is facing another major problem: a shortage of nursing staff.
” It’s not that there aren’t any beds. The beds, we have them, they are equipped, we have the equipment. We have a problem finding staff to turn these beds. “
Thus, if he considers that the measures recently announced by the government are
nuanced, it does not rule out that the authorities may be forced to go further if the hospital system is put to the test.
It is a hypothesis. If we ever ended up with an escape from this wave because of Omicron we could go back, but that would surprise me, to containment. What the French would have difficulty accepting elsewhere, he said.
With the resurgence of cases of contamination, the pandemic should in any case be invited at all levels in the French presidential campaign.
On the form, with a probable impact on the gatherings and a tone like that borrowed by Emmanuel Macron.
But perhaps also on the merits, with debates on the management of the health system.