Jan. 9, 2021

Coronavirus rules appear as pliable as Playdough

The provincial health order restricting gatherings and has been extended for another month. It’s difficult to rationalize some of the machinations applying to the pandemic.

Here we are, those obeying the regulations, stuck in our homes and not being able to interact with friends and family while reports are flooding out about public officials flying all over the globe with wild abandon. Sure, they are getting vilified in the public domain, and rightly so. Some have even lost their jobs or at least been demoted. Temporarily?

The greater question is, how were they able to buy airline tickets and how did they get flights?

In December alone, 4,200 people travelled to Hawaii from Canada, 1,600 of them from Vancouver. In one month, during a supposed shutdown.

On Jan. 8, the BC Centre for Disease Control listed three domestic flights that arrived or departed from Victoria Airport have been added to the exposure list. Since January 1, 18 flights have been added to the exposure list across the province. One such flight alert was listed for a Vancouver-Nanaimo flight.

It doesn’t make sense. We’re under orders not to travel, and yet people are going to Hawaii and the Caribbean. In my simplistic reasoning, why are airlines, ferries, etc. allowed to operate at all when the rules say nobody is supposed to travel? Doesn’t no mean no any more?

I got a note from a Nanaimo snowbird who is having trouble getting back home from California because her flights have been cancelled. She travelled there before flight restrictions but now has difficulty getting back. She’ll be stuck in the land of sunshine until at least March.

The federal government told us flights from the United Kingdom were banned when a variant of the virus was discovered there. However, a check of the Flight Radar app showed flights from London, in the air, bound for Canadian destinations like Toronto and Montreal. No bans were announced from other countries, so all Brits have to do is go to a neighboring country like France or Belgium and merrily fly to Canada.

In Ontario, one couple explained how they were not allowed to drive to their Florida winter home. They could not take their car across the Canada-U.S. border. So, they simply put their car on an auto carrier delivery truck and shipped it to Buffalo, New York. Then they hopped a short helicopter ride to Buffalo, where their car was waiting at the helipad, they cleared immigration and away they went, pet dog and all.

It really begs the question, do we have rules or are they just suggestions . . . for some people?

It’s tough getting officials to enforce the rules when they are the ones breaking them.

Comments welcome