A Sky News poll suggests Christmas gatherings ‘not a priority’ for UK public during Covid. Oh yes they are, Twitter cries
More than half of Britons think fighting Covid-19 is more important than having a normal Christmas, Sky News has reported, citing a new poll. The news was met with mistrust and anger by the outlet’s Twitter audience.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has sent signals that the notorious “rule of six”, which bans larger gatherings during the coronavirus epidemic, could be lifted for Christmas Day. But the proposal runs contrary to the wishes of the “majority of the public” in the UK who “do not agree that Christmas is a priority”, according to a Sky News report on Friday.
Britons are actually happy to sacrifice Christmas gatherings and support even tougher lockdown measures, the outlet said, citing an opinion poll conducted on its behalf by YouGov.
Britons believe Christmas gatherings should be sacrificed this year in the battle against #coronavirus, as a new poll for Sky News reveals public support for a toughening of restrictions https://t.co/AmlTxDQ3HV— SkyNews (@SkyNews) October 9, 2020
The poll shows that “59 percent want the current rules to stay in place through the festive period, compared to 30 percent who say they should be relaxed,” the report said. Between 50 percent and 58 percent of Britons support measures like closing non-essential shops, banning visits to other people’s homes and shuttering pubs and restaurants, according to the survey.
Britons on Twitter were not buying the statistics, however, and began flooding Sky News with expressions of mistrust in the story.
Funny that, because I’ve not spoken to one single person who thinks that restrictions should be tougher. Total bullshit!— Lee Wright (@Leewright0601) October 9, 2020
I'm never polled? I don't believe this to be true. It's BS employed to encourage others into a specific way of thinking.— Graham (@Gra_I_Am) October 9, 2020
In fact, the Sky News report seems more like an attempt to “shape” public opinion rather than reflect it, the skeptics said. Or at a minimum, people said the channel misrepresented the responses by framing it as a settled issue in its headline, when the numbers showed a more divided attitude.
This story is designed to make us think that those of us that are against the lockdown measure are the minority and it’s pointless to fight against it but this is not the case! Everyone needs to start to push back.— Cubist (@WillPorter1985) October 9, 2020
The headline is typical click bait. The poll shows people are divided almost 50-50 on whether tougher restrictions should be applied at Christmas IF the COVID-19 infection rate continues to rise.— Dermot Wickham (@HertsTimelord) October 9, 2020
Many pledged to celebrate Christmas like in any other year, coronavirus or not.
My Christmas will be going ahead as normal— Nick Janney #MOT (@JanneyNick) October 9, 2020
Others found a silver lining in the thought that the restrictions may rein in the consumerist wastefulness that usually accompany the festivities.
Unfortunately I expect we will still be bombarded with Christmas shit. I always breath a sigh of relief in January.— StephenBingham (@stephengbingham) October 9, 2020
I think Christmas is overhyped by the media anyway. Many of us would be perfectly happy to see it downplayed for once.— Ginny (@GinintheCity) October 9, 2020
Some took issue with the government singling out a Christian holiday as the only one deserving of a reprieve from the restrictions.
This is 2 very distinct questions bundled in one. I don’t believe in the restrictions but I don’t think they should be lifted at Christmas.Doing that would be a slap in the face to people of other faiths who live,work and pay taxes here who didn’t get to celebrate their festival.— Paul Spence (@Spencey1984) October 9, 2020
Sky News did not provide raw data from the poll, only saying that YouGov interviewed 1,678 people on 5 and 6 October. Incidentally, there is a poll with a similar theme, sample size and timing on YouGov website for comparison.
When asked if they supported lifting Covid-19 restrictions for Christmas Day, 28 percent said they strongly opposed the idea while 21 percent said they somewhat opposed it. On the other hand, 36 percent expressed either strong or mild support for a one-day break. The remaining 15 percent said they didn’t know how to respond.Also on rt.com UK govt ‘hasn’t yet seen’ desirable impact from local lockdowns, but is considering new curbs in northern England
Like this story? Share it with a friend!