Northern Ireland health minister criticises Van Morrison anti-lockdown songs | Van Morrison

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Northern Ireland health minister Robin Swann has criticised Van Morrison, after the veteran songwriter condemned coronavirus lockdown measures as “fascist”.

In the forthcoming song No More Lockdown, Belfast-born Morrison sings of “Imperial College scientists making up crooked facts.” He adds: “No more lockdown / No more government overreach / No more fascist bullies / Disturbing our peace … Pretending it’s for our safety / When it’s really to enslave.”

Robin Swann.
‘We expected better from him’ … Robin Swann of Northern Irish singer Van Morrison. Photograph: Kelvin Boyes/Press Eye/PA

Writing in Rolling Stone, Swann says, “We expected better from him … Some of what is he saying is actually dangerous. It could encourage people not to take coronavirus seriously. If you see it all as a big conspiracy, then you are less likely to follow the vital public health advice that keeps you and others safe.”

He accuses Morrison of “a smear on all those involved in the public health response to a virus that has taken lives on a massive scale. His words will give great comfort to the conspiracy theorists – the tin foil hat brigade who crusade against masks and vaccines and think this is all a huge global plot to remove freedoms.”

Swann adds: “He’s chosen to attack attempts to protect the old and vulnerable in our society. It’s all bizarre and irresponsible. I only hope no one takes him seriously. He’s no guru, no teacher,” the last line a reference to Morrison’s 1986 album No Guru, No Method, No Teacher.

Last week, other high-profile musicians rejected the seriousness of coronavirus. Stone Roses frontman Ian Brown released a new song, Little Seed Big Tree, singing of “a false vaccine, like a bad dream” and a “Masonic lockdown in your home town”. He voiced other conspiracy theories, such as an alleged plan for the UK government to microchip its population “to have complete control”, and the alleged danger of “5G radiation beamed to Earth from space by satellites”.

He also tweeted: “No lockdown no tests no tracks no masks no vax.” Later he wrote: “But Ian ‘wearing a mask in a pandemic is the correct and sensible thing to do!’ I agree. But what pandemic? #researchanddestroy #housearrest.”

Noel Gallagher also complained of the need to wear masks, saying: “There’s too many fucking liberties being taken away from us now … I choose not to wear one… they’re pointless.” Contrary to British law, he claimed “it’s not a law” to wear a mask in public places.

Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Northern Ireland health minister criticises Van Morrison anti-lockdown songs | Van Morrison

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