In sunglasses and a black beanie, a Canadian man named Michael Jackson on Friday appeared on “Live with Laura-Lynn,” a right-wing online show, and explained why he’s been on the run with his 7-year-old daughter for the last two months.
Jackson told the host, Laura-Lynn Tyler Thompson, that his ex-wife wanted to vaccinate their daughter against the coronavirus, and “I couldn’t let it happen.”
Jackson did not say where he was speaking from but admitted that he has kept the girl since about Nov. 11, long past when he was supposed to return her to her mother.
Upon learning that his wife would probably vaccinate the girl, Jackson said, “My choice was made then and there that this wasn’t going to work, and that I had to protect my daughter from it.”
“So . . . I kept her,” he added.
Saskatchewan judges have issued two court orders for Jackson to return the girl to her mother, Mariecar Jackson, Canadian Broadcasting Corp. News reported.
With tears streaming down her face in a CBC News broadcast, Mariecar Jackson addressed her daughter, saying, “Every day I pray that someday you’ll be home.”
“I love you so much, and I will always be here for you,” she added.
Jill Drennan, Mariecar Jackson’s attorney, told CBC News that Michael Jackson might have fled Saskatchewan province with his daughter.
“We simply don’t know where she is. We are asking the public for help,” Drennan told the news outlet, adding: “We’ve never seen anything quite like this.”
Michael Jackson could not be reached for comment.
In November, the Canadian government approved the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine for children ages 5 to 11. Since then, about 45% of children in that age group have received at least one vaccine dose, while only 2% are fully vaccinated, according to the Canadian government. About 87% of Canadians 12 and older are fully vaccinated.
“Almost half of kids across this country have gotten their vaccine,” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Wednesday. ” . . . We need to get more, so please ask your parents if you can get vaccinated.”
In the United States, about 17% of children ages 5 to 11 are fully vaccinated – a rate health experts called “very disturbing” and due in part to distrust and misinformation about vaccines among parents, the Associated Press reported. More than 62 percent of Americans are fully vaccinated, according to vaccine data tracked by The Washington Post.