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Letter – Principals matter

To the Editor:

Roger Watson’s most recent bellicose bloviation, “Take the Shot or Drink Alone,” is disgusting. And I see that since its appearance in The Herald, I’m not the only person wondering if he will be the downfall of the local paper. Many Americans, like Roger, want to ostracize and even punish people for not being vaccinated against COVID. I’m a Democrat for Zeus’ sake and even I know this is principally wrong! Korematsu v. U.S. or Plessy v. Ferguson anyone?

Principles and natural laws prove that fear will always fail in the end. Just read Socrates, Niccolo Machiavelli, Ben Franklin, Emile Durkheim or Alexis de Tocqueville for proof. I can hear Ricky Ricardo saying, “Roger, you’ve got some reading to do,” with the same gusto he used to get on Lucy about her explaining. Digressing.

Vaccinations are a great weapon to futilely fight our fear of death and continue to overpopulate the globe; killing our host just like the COVID virus. But when the FDA was created by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1906, it was partially to ensure that drugs (the “D” portion of FDA) we consume are PROVEN by the “approval process” to be safe before doing so. How do we prove that drugs are safe?

Since you won’t get this from Roger, I researched exactly why the FDA has not yet approved a single one of our COVID vaccines. Surprisingly, the answer is extremely simple. A minimum of six months data review is required before approving any new vaccine. That six-month review comes after many years of research and trials. Years.

Not for COVID vaccines! Whereas the polio vaccine took almost 50 years to develop, COVID vaccines took less than a year. However, to be objective about this comparison, which is more than you’ll get from Roger, the times and technologies are different. Even so, the world has never seen such a hasty vaccine development.

In 1905 Jacobson v. Massachusetts established that the state has the “right” (I would substitute “the power” for “the right”) to force people to vaccinate against their will to ensure public safety. Look it up. However, since the creation of the FDA the very next year, one would imagine that the courts would revisit this landmark case; perhaps even amend the ruling to include, “Pending FDA approval, the state has the “right” to force people to vaccinate against their will.” Nope. No need for principles or FDA.

Why do we need the FDA? We can look back at our national history and see that agencies like this are necessary to protect citizens from our own government; remember the cover-up of the Tuskegee syphilis experiments on Black people and the DDT cover-up in the 60s? “I’m shocked! Shocked, I say, to learn there’s gambling going on in this establishment!”

If you’ve already vaccinated, good. Feel safe in that. Hopefully you’ll never have reason to feel wrong, and the FDA will soon give their approval, so I may join you. Safely. Principles matter.

Tom Noehren