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Wednesday, November 11, 2020

November 11, 2020
A lab technician extracts a portion of a COVID-19 vaccine candidate during testing at the Chula Vaccine Research Center, run by Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand, Monday, May 25, 2020. Researchers in Thailand claim to have promising results with the vaccination on mice, and have begun testing on monkeys. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)

Can vaccines be made mandatory for everybody? We’ve seen this be the case for public schools in many countries where children are not allowed to attend if they’re not fully vaccinated. As a result many parents have to either homeschool or look for some type of private schooling option. That being said, many places still allow for religious and medical exemptions.

The idea that governments can make vaccines mandatory doesn’t seem to resonate with a lot of people, and it seems that in the near future we may not be allowed to use ‘services’ that are offered to us and overseen by governments if we refuse to comply with medical mandates. We may not be allowed to get approval on our passports to travel for example, or may not be able to enter into government buildings, work if you are a doctor or teacher etc.

What does this mean? Is it time to stop relying and depending on these services? Is it possible for humanity to become somewhat self sufficient and govern itself in a way where we can avoid authoritarian measures that seem to be pushed more and more on the population? Can those who don’t want to receive the vaccine for themselves and their children be understood and accepted by those who do, and vice versa? Isn’t it possible that we can all co-exist together and move forward regardless of what we believe in without the threat of loosing our freedoms, while being open to other perspectives and information that conflicts with what we believe in? Why is there so much divide, anger and hatred between us all?

What Happened: The New York State Bar Association passed a resolution this past Saturday urging the state to consider making the vaccine mandatory for everybody in the state, regardless if many object to it for religious, philosophical or personal reasons.

According to Jason Grant, a staff writer covering legal stories and cases for the New York Law Journal,
The resolution does contain conditions limiting its scope. Those include that the state government should only consider making vaccinations mandatory if voluntary COVID-19 vaccinations fall short of producing needed levels of population immunity; that an assessment of the health threat to various communities be made so that perhaps the mandate can be targeted; and that a mandate only be considered after there is expert consensus about the vaccine”s safety and efficacy.

Chair of the New York Bar association’s Health Law Section’s Task Force on COVID-19 Mary Beth Morrissey expressed that the state has the authority to respond to such a public health crisis, and that this authority is well-established in constitutional law. But what if that response is not agreed upon by many doctors and scientists? Who gets to decide? It’s become quite clear that vaccine hesitancy is at all time high, especially among many doctors as expressed at a World Health Organization conference late last year.

Morrissey went on to state that:
In balancing the protection of the public’s health and civil liberties, the Public Health Law recognized that a person’s health can and does affect others…It may become necessary to require that certain individuals or communities be vaccinated…”

 Why It Matters: The idea that vaccinations can help protect others is founded upon the idea of herd immunity, a theory based on the behaviour of wild-type viruses, a theory that’s also been ridiculed when it comes to COVID-19 by people like Dr. Anthony Fauci, despite that tens of thousands of doctors and scientists who strongly oppose lockdown measures believe it can be an effective way to stop and slow the spread of COVID-19.

In a 2014 analysis in the Oregon Law Review by New York University (NYU) legal scholars Mary Holland and Chase E. Zachary (who also has a Princeton-conferred doctorate in chemistry), the authors show that 60 years of compulsory vaccine policies “have no attained herd immunity for any childhood disease.” It is time, they suggest, to cast aside coercion in favor of voluntary choice.

Will the same trend continue with a COVID vaccine?

A recent consensus statement from a group of renowned infectious disease clinicians observed that vaccine programs have proven ill-suited to the fast-changing viruses underlying these illnesses, with efficacy ranging from 19% to 54% in the past few years.

The point is that justifications for a mandatory COVID vaccine, and other vaccines for that matter, have been heavily disputed. There is a great divide among the citizenry, and when the masses do not agree with mandatory measures recommended and implemented by governments, can we really living in a democracy? Are citizens really being represented by government? Have other interests gotten in the way? Governments are supposed to work for the people and represent the will of the people, yet the common observation of our current reality states we have long strayed from that.

I agree with Edward Snowden, instead of making controversial decisions mandatory, simply present the all information and science and urge/recommend the citizenry to follow guidelines. Forcing people into situations that so many people don’t agree with is a recipe for disaster and really makes the government seem quite authoritarian.

“Who will decide what is false? How can academia, government and mainstream voices be held accountable when they are wrong about information? Why are we not open to hearing more perspectives and determining if they are accurate?

We are again seeing that the only information allowed to disseminate on a topic is information from government or information that government approves of. The focus isn’t on determining what is objectively true or worthy of discussing, it’s simply on ‘does mainstream conjecture and government approve of this?’

Deep down, we have to truly explore the questions as to why we have so much trouble looking at new information. Why are we triggered by it? Why do polarizing sides trigger us so deeply? Why do we accept the invitation to fight? Will our sense-making be much easier and more effective if we are calm, centred within self, clearer of our own bias’ and more open to communicating with empathy? Perhaps it’s time we do that?

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change.”


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