The 1958 French Constitution includes ideals of “Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity,” but President Emmanuel Macron is targeting non-vaccinated citizens of France.
In a Jan. 4 interview with the French publication Le Parisien, President Macron remarked he intends to make life as difficult as possible for the approximately 10 percent of citizens who remain unvaccinated against COVID-19. He said he will continue to curtail their civil liberties.
“I really want to piss them off,” Macron said. “And, so we will continue to do so, to the bitter end. That’s the strategy.”
“I am not going to put them in prison, I am not going to forcibly vaccinate them,” continued Macron. “Therefore you have to say to them: from January 15 you can no longer go to a restaurant, you can no longer go for a drink, you can no longer go for a coffee, you can no longer go to the theatre, you can no longer go to the cinema.”
In the French-language interview, he used a vulgar term, “emmerder,” to describe his plan to make the life of the unvaxxed miserable. Macron’s strategy was published the same day his party was embarrassed by the tabling of their bill to mandate that people show proof of vaccination. Under France’s current law, a negative COVID test or proof one has recovered from coronavirus allows people access to public venues and transportation.
The president’s remarks were also the same day France reported another record day of COVID-19 infections (271,000) as Omicron drives a fifth wave of coronavirus.
According to a report in The Epoch Times, France is one of the most highly vaccinated countries in the world. More than 90 percent of people aged 12 and older have reportedly received both doses of vaccine. The publication France24 reports an enviable 77 percent of the French population has received three doses of vaccine. They attribute their data to France’s Public Health Department, adding Health Minister Olivier Véran last week noted only 4 million adults are not vaccinated.
Macron’s remarks were like blood in the water to political rivals, who rushed to oppose him on social media. Far-right candidates Eric Zemmour and Marine Le Pen both took to Twitter to criticize Macron, Le Pen accusing him of “persisting in division” and of seeking to “make the non-vaccinated second-class citizens.”
“A President shouldn’t say that,” Le Pen posted to her Twitter page. “The guarantor of the unity of the nation persists in dividing it and assumes that he wants to make the unvaccinated second-class citizens.”
“Emmanuel Macron is unworthy of his office,” Le Pen continued. “In April, I will be the President of all French people.”
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