There is a big difference between ignorance and stupidity.
Saturday's anti-lockdown protest in central Sydney was nothing short of stupid.
It's estimated more than 3500 people joined the rally, at a time when Sydney's daily COVID-19 cases reached a new high for the year at 163.
By Sunday 141 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 had been reported. Of these, at least 62 were circulating in the community for all or part of their infectious period.
At last count, 57 people had already been charged in relation to the protest and 90 infringement notices issued. A police strike force was also established to hunt down those who took part.
The behaviour has been widely condemned as selfish and disgusting by police, health authorities and leaders - and rightly so.
Many Tasmanians would have looked on at the photos circulating on social media with horror. Others may have thought protestors holding signs calling for "truth" and "freedom" were justified in their actions.
Some Tasmanians might think what happened in Sydney on Saturday doesn't affect us at all. It does.
Sadly, our state is not immune to this type of reckless behaviour. We are also not entirely innocent.
On Saturday, there were many in our own communities who took to the streets with messages against public health advice - mainly the vaccine.
Protestors, young and old, were spotted in Launceston and Hobart with signs reading "no to the pandemic" and "standing for the truth" - among others.
It was something this masthead chose largely to ignore. Not because it wasn't concerning - particularly in the context of what was unfolding in Sydney.
But because The Examiner has a social responsibility not to provide any type of platform for such a dangerous message.
We will never endorse it, and we will certainly never promote it unnecessarily.
Attention for the sake of attention is not in the public interest, and either were Saturday's protests.
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