Vaccination mandates for the common good

Bill Gerling

Jefferson city

Mr. Editor:

People don’t like being told what to do, especially if it concerns their health. Social media habits, beliefs and misinformation make it difficult for people to protect themselves and others. Normally, the health risks can be borne by the individual, but not in the event of a pandemic. The right to cough, not to mask, or to remain unvaccinated ends where my airspace begins. Your individual right ends when you leave your home and begin to mingle with others. As a Supreme Court justice once said, “My right to swing my fist ends where the other’s nose begins. None of our freedoms are absolute and cannot be limited in the interest of public health.

Republican governors, including that of Missouri, say people have an inherent right to risk getting infected and infected without government interference. The Missouri attorney general, losing in a presidential lawsuit, will sue in an attempt to overturn the mandate. He probably knows it will fail, but wants as much notoriety as possible in the hopes of continuing his way to the US Senate. The vaccination mandates have already been respected. The Supreme Court upheld the Massachusetts mandate for smallpox vaccinations in the Jacobson case in 1905. Vaccination warrants for schoolchildren date from 1850. Governor Ron DeSantis fights mask and vaccination warrants, but students must receive a total of 12 vaccines while attending school in Florida.

State, local and federal governments have historically established rules to protect the health and safety of their citizens. We have laws requiring seat belts, infant restraint, and restrictions on smoking and vaping. Forty years ago, people smoked freely just about anywhere until we found out that secondhand smoke killed about 10,000 people a year. Today, many smokers pay an additional premium for their risky habit that puts their health at risk. Delta Airlines is adding a $ 200 insurance surcharge for employees who choose not to be vaccinated. Hospitalization of unvaccinated patients in June and July cost $ 2.3 billion. That doesn’t take into account blockages, space restrictions, jobs lost due to layoffs, and people struggling to pay their rent and mortgages. The unvaccinated are 10 times more likely to be hospitalized and 11 times more likely to die than the vaccinated. The pleadings of sick and dying unvaccinated patients are seen on television nightly. Young adults and children are suffering and dying now. We have an unvaccinated pandemic. Long live the mandates!

About Teresa G. Wilson

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