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Hundreds attend ‘Freedom of Choice” protest

Front Pages 03 Oct, 2021 Follow News

Hundreds attend ‘Freedom of Choice” protest

By Christopher Tobutt

More than 300 protesters carrying placards in support of free choice for vaccines came to demonstrate outside Government house on Saturday 2 October. It was an impressive turnout, especially considering the threat of rain, and it stretched all the way from beyond the entrance to Governor’s Beach almost down to the Ritz Carlton Hotel. Lots of passing cars tooted their horns in support. The placards carried many different messages, but mostly their concerns were to do with free choice over vaccinations, in light of the Government’s bills which, if passed, would mandate work permit holders to either take the vaccine, or leave the country, they said.

Dr. Tomlinson was there to add his voice to the protest. “This is the time that our voices have to be heard, this is the time it is very important for us to be here and let our representatives know that we will not stand for injustice, and that our bodies are our own, and they are not government property, and we will just not stand for what they plan to do,” he said.

Protester Isadora Ferraro said, “I am standing up for freedom of choice because I believe that I should have a right to say what goes into my body, and what doesn’t. I am here to represent those who feel afraid to stand up in numbers, like work-permit holders. I know some people who say, “well that is your choice if you want to live in a country,” but why mandate something that hasn’t even been proved to keep you safe?”

Many of the people wished to remain anonymous, such as a man with two placards, one reading ‘freedom to choose,’ and another reading, ‘Don’t take away our freedom.’ He said, “I’m here for freedom of choice, he and my freedom and ability to choose what I want to be put into my body… They are infringing on our civil, human and labor rights. They are taking everything away from us.”

Another “No name,” protester said, “I’m here for freedom of choice, no vaccine mandates for Caymanians, Caymanian residents, for the ones on permit as well. The mandate is absolutely wrong, and everyone deserves freedom of choice,”

Protester Mr. JC Calhoun said, “I’m here because it should be anybody’s choice whether or not they have any substance in their body. The first mandate is going to be for work permit holders, but once you start it for somebody, where are you going to stop it? This is surely overreach, there should be no need for coercing people to take the vaccine.”

Another protester simply said, “Not anti-vax, but I am anti-mandate.”

Protester Kim said, “I think it’s important to stand up for what you believe in. I believe everyone has a choice as to what decisions they make for themselves, and their own health. And choice is not just about vaccinating or not vaccinating, its about your choice to select the vaccination you like. We don’t have enough selection and options. We have one product to take and that doesn’t work for everyone.”

Another anonymous protester said, “My poster says, ‘Even God gives us choice,” and if God gives you a choice, who is to say that we have no choice? I want to encourage people to research and think for themselves, don’t just be sheep and follow.”

Kattina Anglin was one of the Freedom of Choice group who had helped to organize the protest. “Freedom of Choice are the persons who decided they were not going to take the vaccine mandate laying down. It’s a big turnout, it is amazing and I hope that the Government sees it,” she said.

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