I found this great comment on Reddit about the hypocrisy of Siouxsie Wiles after someone asked what all the fuss was about:

It is because she was seen breaching the Alert Level 4 guidelines by travelling outside her house for something other than essential personal movement.

You can exercise – but you can’t exercise your way somewhere to hang out there, as Dr Wiles did.

The discussion around this situation has been confused by:

  • Discussion about her bubblemate swimming – Dr Wiles doesn’t have to enforce the rules when her bubblemate breaches the AL4 rules – that’s not her job
  • Talk of the 5km bike trip to the location – it’s true – this can count as exercise

What you absolutely can not do is exercise your way to a location and then just hang out there. Yes – there are common-sense exceptions for things like catching your breath, but there’s no loophole in that if you exercise your way somewhere, you can just hang out there.

If we decided to reinterpret and mischaracterise the rules so that Dr Wiles’ movement was considered OK, then:

  • We can all go to parks within our bubbles and hang out there, as long as we walk, run or cycle there, and we’re two metres from other bubbles – no matter how many people are there. We could have a Reddit meet up even.
  • We can go to the beach to hang out with our friends, as long as we run there, walk there, or take our bike, and we’re two metres from our friends’ bubbles
  • We can exercise our way to outside our friend’s house, and hang out outside there talking to them from the street. Why can’t we just bring a chair actually, and hang out on the footpath? As long as we run to and from there.
  • We can all go to a reserve without a liquor ban and sink some beers, as long as we exercise our way to and from that location

Under Level 4, we need to stay home to save lives.

No matter how smart, or how loved you are.

Dr Wiles has agreed to become a public figure and has put herself out there to support the rules so that we can all stay safe. But, by trying to cover up her own actions and obfuscate what’s happened – she’s doing everyone a disservice.

  • Should we let everyone just hang out at the beach now, so that Dr Wiles reputation isn’t harmed? Should we agree to reinterpret the rules because of her? What if that leads to a case? What if it leads to someone ending up in ICU?

No matter how much you like her – it’s super critical that we all back the rules and that we stay safe.

Such is the wisdom of crowds. If they can see this then why can’t or won’t Dr. Ashley Bloomfield and Jacinda Ardern see it?

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Comment from Reddit:  You Can’t Exercise Your Way Somewhere to Hang Out
Cam Slater

Cam Slater

As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news,...