By Jefferey Jaxen

In perhaps the greatest show of coordinated action, massive protests have erupted in multiple cities globally over the weekend. A reboot of authoritarian-like government restrictions are leading to unprecedented and unscientific edicts as several countries have announced, in near unison, limitations on unvaccinated citizens. Wholesale elimination of basic human rights – employment, gatherings, worship and even movement – are being erased for the unvaccinated and the people have had enough. 


Ground zero of the renewed government push, Austria took an unprecedented, world’s first step to lockdown the unvaccinated as cases surged in the country. That lockdown was quickly transitioned to also include the vaccinated this past Thursday as the its Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg also announced that Covid shots would become mandatory in Austria from Feb. 1. The runaway measures were greeted with some of the largest protests in the country’s history. 


The New York Times reports, “Demonstrators gathered in Milan and Rome on Saturday evening to protest Italy’s coronavirus health pass on the 18th consecutive weekend of such rallies.” 

The protests stretched from early morning into the night.

The Italian government has shown its reliance on heavy police tactics against peaceful demonstrations recently in its largest port city of Trieste were dock workers were fired upon by high-powered water cannons during an extended three-day protest. 


On Thursday, leading up to the weekend’s record protests, Reuters reported that hundreds of protesters gathered outside the Austrian Embassy in Paris to demonstrate against Austria’s new restrictions as France weighted similar measures. 

In a simultaneous admission of vaccine failure and the uselessness of the country’s health pass, [vaccine passport] French PM Emmanuel Macron said in a televised address on November 9th that those 65 and older will need a booster shot from mid-December for vaccine passports to remain valid. French lawmakers also recently approved an extension on the use of the vaccine passport through July 2022. Critics claimed political motives were at play as the extension allows the restrictive pass to be in place through France’s presidential elections in May. France has entered into its 19th consecutive week of protests


London’s summer of discontent, seeing hundreds of thousands pack Trafalgar Square, has spilled into the Autumn as thousands of protestors marched through Oxford street shouting ‘No Vax Passports!’.  

Mirroring France’s move, protestors also gathered in London outside the Austrian embassy over the weekend to send a clear signal that the reimposition of government-mandated lockdowns will not be welcome by the people there.  


Thousands also gathered outside Belfast City Hall to protest their country’s vaccine restrictions 

To the south in the Irish county of Waterford, which has both the highest vaccination rate and the highest COVID-19 incidence rate in Ireland, cases are surging despite 99.5% of adults over the age of 18 in being ‘double-jabbed.’

Irish MMA superstar Conor McGregor took to Twitter to blast his country’s Deputy PM Leo Varadkar who recently went on CNN to claim the 5% of the nation’s unvaccinated population “are causing the trouble.” McrGregor told his 9 million followers Varadkar was a ‘Poisonous individual!’ and ‘Buffoon.’ 


The world has watched Australia’s police enforcers unleashed the most heavy-handed, authoritarian thuggery of any country in the world (perhaps sans China) in the name of public health. Pepper spray, home invasions, baton beatings, COVID camps, and regular barrages of rubber bullets targeting peaceful protestors has shocked the world. 

Yet despite attempts to drive the public into submission, record protests have again erupted in the land down under this weekend in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane and Adelaide.   


In the U.S., New York City’s Central Park was the home of protests where thousands took to the streets chanting ‘We the People Will Not Comply.’ 


Protestors in Croatia took a different approach this weekend as they moved from Zagreb’s central square to the part of the city where the HRT public broadcaster is located after dissatisfaction with the way the HRT covered the protest. 


In Belgium, a darker page was turned as police, in the name of protecting people and public health, shot two protestors in the Dutch city of Rotterdam on Friday leading into this weekend. ‘Police open fire on anti-lockdown protestors in the Netherlands’ the NY Post reported. Replaying like a broken record of vaccine failure, despite a high percentage of the country being fully vaccinated, The Netherlands has seen a spike in coronavirus cases and reinstated a partial lockdown last week. The tragic events mark the first time since the beginning of the pandemic that police have opened fire on people protesting a government’s COVID restrictions. 

Jefferey Jaxen

Jefferey Jaxen is a health journalist and featured in his weekly segment, ’The Jaxen Report’, on The HighWire. As an investigative journalist, researcher, and compelling writer, Jefferey serves as Lead editor of The HighWire News and Opinion Team.

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