SANTA MONICA, CA—Rivaled only by New York, the Golden State has endured some of our country’s most draconian lockdown and masking policies. With Los Angeles inching towards implementing vaccine passports and San Francisco already enforcing the controversial policy, some concerned Californians are speaking out.
In late August, I interviewed a few of the hundreds of protesters who gathered in Santa Monica to voice their opposition to vaccine mandates. The demonstrators aired a variety of grievances, though many held similar concerns.
Several of the demonstrators commented on the need to protect bodily autonomy, with many fearing that government issued vaccine mandates would undermine the freedom of choice needed for a patient to truly offer informed consent. Others made the interesting point that such mandates threaten to amplify our political and social division by creating a physical distinction that will segregate people from their political opposition.
The rallyers I spoke with were also acutely aware of the threat that big business, not just big government, poses to freedom, with some businesses imposing COVID vaccine requirements by their own volition. This was perhaps one of the most interesting takeaways from the event, as it underscored a continued shift among the grassroots away from business-friendly conservatism and towards justified skepticism of the private and public sectors.
Other protesters, including one that I spoke with, highlighted the absurdity of the phrase “my body my choice” being used as an attempt to justify abortion, which actually destroys the body of another living human being, while the left uses the state to coerce people into getting the vaccine, in some cases holding their economic wellbeing hostage in the process. This blatant contradiction is just further evidence that so many of the values leftist messaging appeals to are only adopted out of expediency, not authentic moral conviction.
One man I interviewed was there to document the protest, telling me he was in support of measures to mandate vaccines. When I pressed him on this contradiction and asked his opinions on abortion, he simply told me that it wasn’t a topic he wanted to discuss.
When I asked him if an adult who has made the informed decision not to receive the vaccine should be able to work, go to school, or even shop at a grocery store, he told me he believes unvaccinated people shouldn’t be able to engage in any of those essential activities, then explicitly agreed with the idea that we must give up our bodily autonomy for the greater good.
The conversation took an even more telling turn when I asked his thoughts about an article from the Washington Post that inquired whether or not unvaccinated patients should be booted to the back of the line when receiving emergency medical care, he responded by saying that “I kind of think that if you haven’t put society ahead of yourself at this crisis point” that “you shouldn’t get what you want at the time you want it.”
Unfortunately, it’s evident that many of his perspectives appear to be present in media rooms, governing bodies, and other halls of power. As the unholy alliance between the government and much of corporate America endeavors to exert more control over our lives, it’ll be up to average Americans to safeguard their liberty.