It’s too late for Boris Johnson to shut the borders — the horse has already bolted – The Sun

FROM tomorrow, the UK is closed for business.

Anyone flying into the country — foreigners and British nationals alike — must go into self-isolation for 14 days.

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What a sick joke: A Tory government elected with the mandate to make the UK a global nation is slamming the borders shut just as the rest of the world is opening up for business and pleasure.

For who will come to the UK if they have to go into two weeks of solitary confinement?

What foreign businessman or woman will come to this country when they know they must self-isolate for two weeks upon arrival?

What foreign tourist will visit our shores when they know that for 14 days after their arrival, the only sight they will see is the inside of their hotel room?

And what Brit — starved of sunshine, sand and sangria for so long — will dare to have even the most modest of mini-breaks abroad when they know they must hibernate for a fortnight on their return?

A 14-day quarantine for all would have made total sense in the first months of the year, when millions were being waved into this country without so much as a temperature test.

More than 18million visitors breezed into the UK between January 1 and March 23, even as Covid-19 rampaged across the world; even as other European countries were going into lockdown. And the only people formally isolated in the UK were 273 travellers arriving from Wuhan, China.

Why now? The Government has said all along they are following the science. But chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance makes it crystal clear this kind of draconian quarantine works only when introduced in a timely fashion.

Waiting until June 8 is bonkers, shutting the stable door months after coronavirus has galloped off into the world.

And here’s another problem: IT WILL NEVER WORK.

Travellers coming into the UK will be obliged to complete a form recording where they will spend their two weeks of self-isolation.

But if you put your details down as Squirrel Nutkin of Made-Up Name Farm, border officials will be unable to check if that address actually exists.

Mr Nutkin will be free to travel to his nominated quarantine address on public transport but he is unlikely to be monitored by Public Health England — or the police — because apparently only a tiny proportion of arrivals will ever be checked.


My rough guess would be . . .  none. What a laughable farce, Boris.

After an unprecedented revolt from angry Tory backbenchers, the shattered airlines, the battered tourism industry and, indeed, anyone with three brain cells to rub together, Home Secretary Priti Patel says that quarantine is a “time-limited approach” and pledges to explore the possibility of “international travel corridors”.

But make no mistake, quarantine is coming.

This country effectively shuts its borders tomorrow.

This loony policy will be in place for three weeks and could, in theory, last for as long as a year. But this compulsory 14-day quarantine will not keep us safe.

It will simply mean more abject humiliation heaped into this flailing Government’s lap and more damage to our devastated economy.

Even if the madness lasts for only 21 days, the British tourism industry estimates a loss of £19.7billion.

This should be the moment to declare that our country is open for business, the time for our nation to get back to work and play. This is surely not the time for the UK to hide behind the net curtains and pretend to the world nobody is home.

This belated closure of our borders is an ill-conceived act of national self-harm.

There MUST be more effective ways to keep our people safe while keeping our country open.

This policy will not keep us safe, we can’t afford it and it will never work. Have the guts to junk it now, Boris.

Emily Maitlis

EMILY MAITLIS once more risked accusations of naked political bias when she bravely laid into our Tory PM on BBC’s Newsnight.

I don’t doubt the sincerity of Emily’s political views — exactly the same as everyone else’s at the BBC — but it is clear that being biased serves another purpose for Newsnight.

It is the only reason anyone ever talks about the show.

McCanns deserve sympathy

As the Madeleine McCann case suddenly looks like it could be nearing a resolution, our hearts should go out to Kate and Gerry McCann.

For more than 13 years, every parents’ nightmare has been the brutal reality of their lives. Our daughter had just started school when Madeleine was taken and now she is about to go to university.

I can’t begin to imagine what Kate and Gerry have suffered all these years.

They have always divided opinion because Madeleine was left alone with her siblings while her parents had dinner with friends nearby.

But if Kate and Gerry McCann made a mistake, it is a mistake they will regret until their graves.

It is a mistake that has never warranted such a life-rending punishment. And I believe it is a mistake any mother and father could have made.

We should all wish peace to the McCann family. It is cruel and heartless to do anything else.

BBC’s answer to Alexa

THE BBC’s answer to Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa will be called Beeb – a male voice, to avoid portraying women as subservient sexbots.

The corporation’s new voice assistant will initially work on laptops and desktop computers and will ignore anyone who uses rude words.

With his working-class Northern accent, Beeb will also be the only person at the BBC who sounds like he voted for Brexit.

Lake District

IN the Lake District, rangers filled 130 rubbish bags after one weekend.

At Dorset’s Durdle Door, volunteers cleared piles of trash left by day-trippers too stupid and selfish to take home their own rubbish.

It makes you miss lockdown.

Spock's got sign spot-on

Now that handshakes are considered unhygienic, a scientist suggests we adopt the traditional Vulcan salute as popularised by Star Trek’s Mr Spock.

“It means ‘live long and prosper’,” says Professor Robert West, of University College London.

Even better: Replace Western handshakes with the Japanese bow.

Westerners think the Japanese bow means bending yourself double, but most bows are polite, gentle inclinations of the head.

The Japanese are definitely doing something right.

With a population of 126million – twice that of the UK – Japan has fewer than 1,000 coronavirus deaths, compared to 40,000 here.

Their sky-high standards of personal hygiene mean the Japanese are keen on face masks, which don’t become compulsory on public transport here until June 15.

Better late than never! When the next global pandemic strikes, let’s do exactly what the Japanese are doing.

Hands up, don’t shoot!

Until recently, British cops would shout at bikini-clad women for the crime of sunbathing.

Why don’t social distancing rules apply to mobs screaming: “F*** the police?”

I am not convinced our officers should be “taking a knee” during Black Lives Matter protests.

They are not responsible for the brutal killing of George Floyd. Seeing coppers down on one knee felt inappropriate.

Rather like those protesters chanting: “Hands up, don’t shoot!” at unarmed British cops who were not carrying even a water pistol.

Nadiya Bychkova

It is sad news that Viva The Divas, the live dance show featuring Strictly’s Janette Manrara, Katya Jones and Nadiya Bychkova, has been cancelled.

But the cancellation does give newspapers an excuse to run pictures of Nadiya. You didn’t get that when they postponed the Tokyo Olympics, Wimbledon and the rest.

'lawn the mawn'

SHARING a video of herself on a lawn mower with her 1.7 million Instagram followers, Danish model Nina Agdal confesses that she has only just mastered the gardening lingo.

“Today I learn that it’s called to ‘mow the lawn’ and I’ve been saying ‘lawn the mawn’ this whole time,” sighs Nina.

The reason nobody corrected Nina is because “lawn the mawn” just sounds so adorable.

Take on Kongers

In 1972 our country was a refuge for 27,000 Ugandan Asians persecuted by dictator Idi Amin. Those Ugandan Asians proved to be a huge boon for this country.

Now, if the old comrades in Beijing push through harsh security laws, we could take in hundreds of thousands of Hong Kong citizens who hold British National (Overseas) passports.

With their work ethic, entrepreneurial spirit and aspirational belief in education, these Hong Kongers would turbo-charge the British economy.

We should welcome them with open arms.

The Queen

IT is inspirational to see the Queen riding a horse at the age of 94.

If I last that long, I will be delighted if I can remember my name.

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