Crying foul over mandates to curtail COVID-19

William T. Robinson, Jr.

The COVID-19 virus has developed variants, especially the Delta variant that is wreaking havoc among those with preexisting health problems, compromised immunity, and our younger children. We are therefore challenged to work harder to combat this demon. We have been given some guidelines to follow to fight this menace, e.g., vaccinations and wearing masks in crowed venues. While vaccines do not make you exempt from getting the coronavirus, it lessens your chances of being hospitalized or dying from the virus.

There was a period of time when many of us wore masks and started getting vaccines. We saw a decline in the spreading of the virus, resulting in fewer hospitalizations and deaths. Unfortunately, while everyone is complaining and wishing for some type of normalcy to return, we are not all aboard as per making a unified sacrifice to tackle the problem. We have a dilemma concerning mandates. Some favor getting vaccines and wearing masks, while others consider this about the right to make your own choice. This issue has caused many tempers to flare, often forcing local municipalities, mayors, and governors to make vaccine and mask mandates usually following the guidelines suggested by the Center of Disease Control (CDC). These mandates are against the will of those adamant about free choice.

It is hard for some people to imagine why everyone wouldn’t be aboard, sacrificing their own personal views for what is best for everyone. But some people are just as adamant in expressing their freedom of choice, rebuking government intervention. There is a myriad of parents who feel they should have the choice to decide if their child should wear a mask, regardless of imposed mandates to do so. This sentiment is also seen in those who refuse to get vaccinated to fight the virus.

Some of those refusing to get a vaccine are suspicious and leery of government involvement. They cite historic, unscrupulous practices targeted toward different groups, e.g., the Tuskegee Experiment that gave syphilis to unknowing Black men. They were refused treatment, and their conditions were studied over a period of years. The idea of feeling like guinea pigs, not knowing the far-ranging effects of the vaccine, is fueling some critics’ fear and skepticism. But think of the many medications people take, not knowing the long-range effect or outcome.

Not allowing the government to control your life or the decisions you make might be considered contradictory. The government already controls a number of things in your life: how you can discipline your children, paying taxes, wearing a seat belt, and even in some states a woman’s reproductive rights, etc. Where is the public outrage over the denial of one’s freedom of choice over these subjects?

It is sad how some politicians have politicized vaccines and masks, feeding on the gullibility and fears of those ill-informed and loyal to the practices of a specific political party. History will hold some of these demagogues culpable in the death of thousands of people.

Let’s stop finger pointing and spreading untruths and gravitate to the reality of the science presented to us by scientists and professional researchers. It will take all of us, making a united effort, to hinder the spread, mutation and existence of this heinous virus. We are our own worst enemies at this point. It doesn’t matter about who may be right or who may be wrong. Making a personal sacrifice in the best interests of humanity, especially when it comes to our children’s survival and their future is what matters.

Not working together may be the beginning of our own demise. Being selfish should not be an option. Let’s pray we can come together and do the right thing. Your life may depend on it.

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