The potential for misinformation-fuelled anger to become more of a problem in New Zealand, shouldn't be underestimated.
Anti-vaccination activists and people with Donald Trump flags attached themselves to Sunday's third Groundswell protest on regulations and rural concerns. That came after earlier small rallies on Saturday - an international day of protest against coronavirus lockdowns and vaccine mandates.
Destiny Church leader Brian Tamaki spoke at a Saturday lockdown protest in the Auckland Domain. A few hundred people also showed up at a demonstration in New Plymouth.
A previous protest outside Parliament resulted in a security review for MPs.
As Covid-19 continues its creeping progress across the country and people move around more, pressure from a minority could build up.
Modellers are concerned a holiday surge in cases could occur - although the country has so far weathered three months of the Delta outbreak well while markedly boosting vaccination levels. Now more than 83 per cent of the eligible population is fully vaccinated.
Across the Tasman, demonstrators rallied at the weekend in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Hobart and Perth.
There were also some counter rallies by people supporting vaccination. One of the pro-vaccine organisers, Nahui Jimenez, said: "The majority of people support these health measures which actually have helped millions of people not get Covid".
That may seem like an obvious, common sense observation to make, but these days the usual silence of the majority on issues of the day, including Covid response policies and climate change, does not work to their advantage. A smaller, more motivated, group in a society can skew outcomes.
The void tends to be filled here and overseas by people prepared to make some noise, push their barrows, and grab attention. Such people can be ripe for manipulation by political figures and groups trying to ride the wave.
Australian Security Intelligence Organisation director general of security Mike Burgess said earlier this year that "Covid has reinforced extremist beliefs and narratives about societal collapse".
Protesters are trying to make it hard for political leaders to bring in or continue strict rules on Covid. Perceived lockdown weariness and the need for public compliance has been a factor in the Government's recent response here.
At the weekend, the Dutch port city of Rotterdam was hit by unrest after several hundred people opposed to events being restricted to the vaccinated clashed with police and set fire to cars and bicycles. Several people were injured. Protests were held on Sunday in Vienna after Austria extended its lockdown nationwide and announced a plan to make coronavirus vaccinations compulsory. Another protest occurred yesterday in Brussels, Belgium, with far-rightists among the crowd.
In Australia, anti-vaccine protesters at the weekend were already taking a stance against vaccinating children - something that will be crucial there and here for both youngsters' safety against Covid and for high levels of immunity overall.
The agitation over vaccine mandates and passes means people are lobbying against two key measures needed to help everyone. Even in the midst of another Covid surge in Europe, shots and boosters are showing their worth in keeping serious illness and death down.
People who are actively anti-masks are also contributing to a higher level of danger. Research in the British Medical Journal based on analysis of studies reported a 53 per cent reduction in Covid incidence with mask-wearing and a 25 per cent drop with social distancing.
There's a lot riding on continued suppression of the virus as much as possible: prevention of deaths, hospitalisations, infections, the possibility of long Covid.
Scientists are still learning about the impacts. The United States Centres for Disease Control and Prevention has published studies showing pregnant women struck with Delta are at greater risk of suffering a stillbirth or dying during childbirth.
There's an ongoing battle for influence during the pandemic, playing out around the world.