August 6, 2021

Vaccine Mandates

“New York City will soon require proof of COVID-19 vaccinations for anyone who wants to dine indoors at a restaurant, see a performance or go to the gym, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Tuesday, making it the first big city in the U.S. to impose such restrictions.” AP News

Many private companies are also requiring employees to be vaccinated. NBC News

Here’s our recent coverage of mask mandates. The Flip Side

See past issues

From the Right

The right is critical of vaccine mandates, arguing that they infringe upon personal autonomy.

From the Left

The left supports vaccine mandates, arguing that they are necessary for public health.

The left supports vaccine mandates, arguing that they are necessary for public health.

A libertarian's take

“​​Back when this country was founded, our population was routinely ravaged by disease: waterborne illnesses such as typhoid, polio and cholera; mosquito-borne illnesses such as malaria and yellow fever; bacterial infections including staph, strep and tuberculosis; and airborne viral infections such as measles and mumps. Our ancestors used the power of the law to contain those threats… Tuberculosis patients who don’t comply with treatment can be, and are, forcibly isolated until they complete a lengthy and unpleasant drug regimen. In 20 years around the libertarian and conservative movements, I cannot recall ever hearing anyone denounce this practice…

“It wasn’t that our ancestors didn’t love individual liberty; they just loved it a little less than they hated getting typhoid or smallpox. Conservatives [arguing against mandates now] who think that they’re defending a kind of natural order of things, or at least historical precedent, are actually fixing on a fairly recent, and extraordinarily novel, era characterized by humanity’s conquest of the most common and infectious diseases… But it’s actually highly abnormal — and since the outbreak of covid-19 has pushed us a little closer toward the historical ‘normal,’ arguably our willingness to infringe on personal liberty should get more ‘normal’ too.”
Megan McArdle, Washington Post

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