COVID is a wretched disease. Contracting it poses more risk for personal injury and longer-term medical costs than any of the vaccines, and I have not heard any arguments for refusing the vaccine that stack up to the risks of becoming infected. But because they do not make sense to me, does not mean they don’t make sense to the person refusing the vaccine. And it isn’t my place or anyone else’s to hold them down, kicking and screaming, and inject them with stuff against their will. That crap happens in China. Not here.

The basic gist of the president’s executive order, which I believe is an abuse of power by using the Department of Labor, is if you don’t get the COVID vaccine, you can’t work. If people can’t work, they and their families can’t eat, or pay rent. It’s draconian. I can also see this backfiring in a couple of different ways.

Workers say I don’t want the vaccine – so fire me. Would be a disaster with health care workers while hospitals are under stress and wouldn’t help the situation with other labor supply because people are sick. Now, not only are many people sick and can’t work, some portion of the ones who are not sick yet won’t be allowed to come to work by government order.

Next, these people that can’t feed their families end up on UI, welfare, foodstamps, HUD, SSI or some combination thereof. Then we get to pay their COVID bills on top of that.

It’s a stupidly desperate plan.

What we should do is the same thing we’ve been doing while living in a free society for centuries – We protect ourselves as best we can from people who make what may be regarded as bad choices. They will figure out soon enough what those consequences are of the choices they make. But we also demand accountability when those choices endanger others. Negligently spreading a deadly antigen around the commons is something like driving on the sidewalk and should come with the same sorts of consequences. It’s that simple. If you want to stop the spread of COVID, update negligence laws and get the personal injury lawyers involved – because that is what this is – personal injury. Suddenly, the maskholes will all but disappear and there won’t be a whole lot of noisy, factless debate about parents sending their kids to school without masks because there’s something persuasive about having to work one’s ass off and only be able to eat for the rest of one’s life because they couldn’t be bothered with a piece of cloth.