Therapeutic State

The Time to Resist Vax Passports Is Now

By Helen Andrews, The American Conservative

had Covid over Christmas break, after my triple-vaxxed husband brought it home from a conference, which means two things: I now have natural immunity, and you will never persuade me that vaccinated people don’t spread the virus to others.

That was supposed to be the rationale for vaccine passports. If vaccines prevented the spread of Covid, then there might be value in giving people the peace of mind of knowing their local cafe or museum or office building was a safe space where nobody would infect them.

Now that vaccines turn out to be better at protecting yourself than protecting others, the rationale for making them mandatory is dissolving. And yet this is the exact moment when cities across the country are launching their own vaccine passports.

The cities of Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Washington, D.C., all have vaccine passport systems coming into effect this month, covering restaurants, gyms, entertainment venues, and other indoor locations. Los Angeles launched SafePassLA in November, following the lead of San Francisco and New York City, which launched their vaccine passports last fall.

The mayors of these cities don’t even pretend to have a good rationale for launching vaccine passports now. Reading their public remarks, the reasoning seems to be that the more they harass the unvaccinated, the higher their city’s vax rate will go. Invocations of “protecting others” are rote, with no explicit suggestion that vaccinated individuals don’t spread the new, highly contagious Omicron variant.

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