Two things happened yesterday:
(1) Biden declared a vaccine mandate for all workers in companies with 100 or more people
(2) LA mandated vaccines for all students 12 and up
Personally, I am strongly supportive of the first, and really on the fence about the second. The vaccine has not yet been approved for students under 16; it’s still under emergency use. Children under 18 have extremely low risk from the virus; in the UK, they claim that the risk of the virus is only marginally greater than the risk from the vaccine for that age group. Since most parents cannot afford private school or to quit work and home school and children must attend school, they might as well go door to door with armed guards and a pharmacist vaccinating children. CA makes it virtually impossible for parents to opt out of vaccination requirements for school.
On the flip side, I really want this to end, and the FDA is taking its sweet time approving the vaccine. Having vaccinated kids will mean less hysteria and fewer school closures. I honestly go back and forth about whether I think this is the right thing to do or not.
On the flip side, for adults, the illness is more dangerous than the vaccine. The older you are, the more lopsided the risk is. It’s a no-brainer for any adult to get the vaccine, not only for their own well-being but for the well-being of society. The vaccine is no longer under emergency use authorization for adults. And if you really don’t want the vaccine, you can quit your job and go work for a company with less than 100 people. Everybody is hiring right now. The only thing is that this is a national mandate, unlike school vaccine mandates, which are usually by the states.
The hysteria over Biden’s announcement dwarfs reactions to vaccine mandate for LAUSD. That’s obviously in part because it affects more people. But in general, I am sick of the “suffer the children” mentality in the US. Adults should be forced to vaccinate! Kids are required to get all kinds of vaccines, many of which the vast majority of adults have not received. It’s time adults stepped up and got their jabs and took one for the team. Children have sacrificed so much for a disease that is – literally – less risk to them than the seasonal flu. Why? For the well-being of over-40s.
There are undoubtedly going to be legal challenges. I sincerely hope Biden prevails. I would honestly like to see some kind of mandate that forced the vaccine on every single adult over 60. But this is a great step in the right direction.