‘Dad’s a dictator, anything goes with Mum’: how masks and distancing rules are dividing Britain
What do you do when your loved ones flout the law – or nag you about going out? As lockdown eases, attitudes to Covid-19 seem more polarised than ever
Michael, a 35-year-old university lecturer from Sheffield, barely speaks to his brother nowadays. For years, they had been drifting apart over political differences such as Brexit. “He hates my leftwing, liberal beliefs as much as I hate his way of looking at the world,” Michael says. “We used have a pint together occasionally, or go to a match.” But coronavirus was the final straw.
Even before masks became mandatory in English shops, Michael always wore a face covering when he went shopping and did his best to maintain social distancing. His brother did not. “He says he doesn’t care if he gets Covid-19 and has flouted all the rules,” says Michael. “He loves the conspiracy theories that it came from a Wuhan lab, or that it doesn’t really exist. I am incensed by his selfish and unthinking approach.”