On Sunday, thousands of anti-face mask and COVID-19 vaccine mandate activists from across the country rallied on the Mall in Washington to voice opposition to the President Joe Biden government’s coronavirus mask and vaccine policies. The crowd at the base of the Washington Monument, and then advancing to the Lincoln Memorial, the demonstrators held signs saying, “Coercion is Not Choice” and “Make Love Not Mandates!!”
Just about twenty-four months into a deadly COVID-19 pandemic that has killed over 5595980 people worldwide and 866500 alone in the U.S., the crowd on the National Mall was a jarring spectacle. Moreover, a crowd of protestors, numerous unmasked, decrying jab mandates in the middle of a city that has adopted face-mask and jab rules to reduce illness and unfortunate death from the surge of the Omicron variant of the lethal virus, which has battered the capital for weeks.
According to an authorization issued by the National Park Service, organizers had assessed that twenty thousand people would attend the demonstration, advancing from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial.
#DefeatTheMandates Thousands of protesters from across the country — including some of the biggest names in the anti-vaccination movement — descended on the nation’s capital Sunday for a rally against vaccine mandates. pic.twitter.com/qCIRepI6uV
— Sputnik (@SputnikInt) January 23, 2022
“Take those masks off; It’s all a lie!”
A smaller gathering of several thousand had arrived on the Mall by Sunday afternoon. Some of them were white-haired; others were being pushed in strollers. Moreover, the majority were White, and numerous wore gear with slogans supporting ex-US President Trump. In front of a cart with a “Don’t Tread on Me” flag, several men began chants of ‘Let’s go Brandon’ and ‘F— Joe Biden’ to cheers. The few who used masks endangered the tirades of a man screaming, ‘Take those masks off!’ and ‘It’s all a lie!’
Later, nearly ten men wearing the emblem of the Proud Boys, a radical group involved in the 6th JAN Capitol insurrection, lingered on the Reflecting Pool’s Lincoln side. They temporarily engaged in a shouting match with a small gathering of counter-protesters at the edge of the demonstration, then departed.
Previously, the United States Supreme Court blocked President Biden’s coronavirus immunization-or-testing mandate for large companies on 13th January – a policy the conservative justices deemed an improper imposition on the health and lives of Americans – while endorsing an isolated federal jab requirement for healthcare amenities. As a result, numerous American businesses have implemented mandatory face mask-wearing policies to protect their employees.
Moreover, face-masks remained polarizing. Recently, a Democratic President encouraged people to use face masks and noted that nearly one-third of US citizens report they don’t use masks altogether. Several GOP-leaning states have no mask requirements. Some Democratic-governed states, like California, have reimposed indoor masking requirements.
COVID-19 Demonstrations in Brussels
Police force fired water cannons and dense cloud of lachrymator in Brussels, Belgium, to disperse the crowd demonstrating coronavirus inoculations and administration restrictions that aim to limit the fast-transmitting Omicron version. Additionally, law enforcement stated the demonstration in Brussels drew an assessed fifty thousand people, Germany, and several other countries to take part. Demonstrators yelled ‘Liberty!’ as they moved forward and had violent confrontations with law enforcement.
According to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, about 77 percent of Belgium’s population has been fully immunized against COVID-19, and 53 percent have received booster doses. Yet, overall, Belgium has seen over 28700 COVID-19 deaths.