As news broke shortly after the 2020 election that Pfizer had developed a vaccine for the COVID-19 virus, the end of the pandemic came into sight. Individuals weary to go into public areas were given a pathway to return to normality. Nine months later, the campaign for Americans to get vaccinated has ramped into an unnecessarily aggressive war on vaccine hesitancy.
With the vaccine being widely available to all Americans for just over six months now, most of the folks who wanted to get vaccinated have already done so. Currently, about 162 million people have been fully vaccinated, or just over 57% of the U.S. population. That being the case, the current goal of the vaccination campaign has been to convince or inform those hesitant to get the vaccine to do so.
However, some of the main proponents of vaccination in the government, media, and elsewhere have turned away from conviction and towards coercion.
Take the NFL for example, who recently sent out a memo to all thirty-two teams that they could face heavy fines and even forfeitures if there is a COVID-19 outbreak amongst the teams’ unvaccinated players. Essentially, this move by the NFL all but mandates its players to get vaccinated by making it a competitive disadvantage for them to forego the shots. With football being the most-watched sport in America, it sends a loud message to not only football players but also the rest of the country that being unvaccinated makes you a target.
It’s not solely the NFL taking action against the unvaccinated. New York City recently announced that individuals must be vaccinated in order to enter restaurants, gyms, and other public venues. While New York City is the first city in the U.S to require a “vaccine passport” of sorts, they certainly won’t be the last, especially with President Biden expressing his support for other American cities to follow suit (22:55).
It’s clear at this point that unvaccinated Americans are not the target of a vaccine information campaign but rather a policy campaign—one that is designed to put a chokehold on their freedoms in an effort to pressure them into vaccination. Such a policy campaign is not only authoritarian in nature, but also entirely unnecessary as well.
An otherwise innocuous information campaign would simply state the facts about the vaccine. The shots are designed to heavily protect each individual who receives both doses from contracting the virus and mitigate the symptoms of those few who experience breakthrough cases. Not only that, the inoculations have shown evidence of reducing transmission as well, making it far more unlikely for a vaccinated individual to spread the virus asymptomatically. Instead, the strong-arm campaign forwarded by our corporate and political leaders is causing a greater rift between those who are vaccinated and those who are not.
With the vaccine widely available nationally, any American who wants to get vaccinated has that option. While it is incumbent on the government to advocate for citizens to get vaccinated, it is both unreasonable and unnecessary for them to coerce the citizens to do so. For a contemporary example of how the American government should proceed, look to the handling of cigarettes. The government advocates against smoking as it is proven to be harmful, but ultimately it allows the citizens to make their own decisions like the adults that they are.
In a country as free as the United States, Americans should have the freedom to make their own health decisions without being babied by the government. That includes their freedom to decide whether or not they want to get vaccinated.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.