On Curious Transformation of ACLU's Position on Mandates
... and the habits of the Machine.
This story is a short one. I am figuring out a format in which I can occasionally send out “breaking news” and interesting bits without spending three days mixing quick breaking news and slow philosophy. Generally speaking, philosophy is where my mind is at—and I intend to keep it—but sometimes there are very interesting bits that I just want to share quickly, so maybe I’ll come up with a special format for that, similar to El Gato’s “Kitten Corner” (suggestions welcome).
Meanwhile, let’s talk about about the ACLU and the transformation of their position on mandates. I have to stick a tiny bit of philosophy into the story because I can’t help it, and then the ACLU.
[The other day, I took a leap of faith and started a thread on Facebook in which I asked my militantly-pro-mandate friends to explain how they logically reconcile their desired “public health” outcome of vaccinating the reluctant ones to prevent transmitting the virus onto good citizens with the fact that the v-e does not prevent transmission—and that’s before we go to the land of v-e-resistant variants and possible ADE.
To my amazement, the thread was a success. Naturally, everybody with a strong opinion kept their strong opinion—but it was perhaps the first time I’ve seen that a conversation on this topic remained civil and respectful. I must say, I worked very hard for that!!
But then something happened that left me a little bit shaken and pissed off. See, as I was babysitting that discussion, I noticed that a dear friend of mine, with whom I had not spoken for a couple of years, “liked” my post. Knowing his general views, I thought, there is no way. I would expect him to be the first one in line to get the v-e and the booster and then to defend this product with fervor till his last breath. But then we talked, and I learned that, yes, he did line up just like I thought he would—but that the shot had severely injured him and thus he saw the face of the Machine. So now that he’s been injured, he believes it should not be mandated. (I don’t know his position on the mandates from before.) And so now he is on his own with his injury, and no one cares, and the manufacturers are obviously not liable, and all he has is an online support group that can be censored any minute. Which is kind of the scenario of being betrayed by the Machine that I’ve been writing about for years. And while I have been writing about it for years, I just hate to see that it is actually happening. I truly would prefer to be wrong about all this and laugh about my obviously wrong analysis of grand corporate corruption ten years from now when everyone is just fine. I am not afraid for myself. I hate to see the innocent suffering. And so of course, first and foremost, I wish my friend a speedy recovery, and I pray for his healing, and I don’t care who is right. But also, I am mad that the Machine takes a bite out of pure-minded children and then spits them out. It’s dishonest].
Anyway, here is a tweet by ACLU going full Orwell.
(Never mind the fact that the communities of color are actually the most “hesitant” at this moment, alongside the PhDs.)
And now please compare their recent tweet to their previous position. Please read the PDF (linked to the image) or the select quotes below and draw your own conclusions…
American history contains vivid reminders that grafting the values of law enforce-
ment and national security onto public health is both ineffective and dangerous. Too often, fears aroused by disease and epidemics have justified abuses of state power. Highly discriminatory and forcible vaccination and quarantine measures adopted in response to outbreaks of the plague and smallpox over the past century have consistently accelerated rather than slowed the spread of disease, while fomenting public distrust and, in some cases, riots.
Rather than focusing on well-established measures for protecting the lives and
health of Americans, policymakers have recently embraced an approach that views public health policy through the prism of national security and law enforcement. This model assumes that we must “trade liberty for security.” As a result, instead of helping individuals and communities through education and provision of health care, today’s pandemic prevention focuses on taking aggressive, coercive actions against those who are sick. People, rather than the disease, become the enemy.
Current pandemic planning policies fail to heed history’s lessons. Since 9/11, the
Bush Administration has adopted an all-hazards, one-size-fits-all approach to disaster planning. By assuming that the same preparedness model can be applied to any kind of disaster—whether biological, chemical, explosive, natural or nuclear—the all-hazards approach fails to take into account essential specifics of the nature of the virus or bacteria, how it is transmitted, and whether infection can be prevented or treated. Following this flawed logic, several state-based proposals have sought to address any “public health emergency,” ignored effective steps that states could take to mitigate an epidemic, such as reinvigorating their public health infrastructure, and instead resorted to punitive, police-state tactics, such as forced examinations, vaccination and treatment, and criminal sanctions for those individuals who did not follow the rules