Do You Get A Say In What Happens To Your Body?
Today, the question that is captivating the public’s attention is, “Do you alone make the choice’s over your own body, or do others have some say in it?” You would think that most of the people who insist that only you have a choice over your body – abortion rights namely – would do the same with the debate over vaccination. Apparently not.
Our wise friends at the “The Good Men Project“, a hotbed of consistent bad advice for men lays another gem of wisdom onto us in an OpEd through author Shawn Henfling,
I’ve seen the Daily Beast, The Huffington Post, and several other more liberal publications lambast Chris Christie and Rand Paul for daring to suggest that mandatory vaccinations conflict with parent rights. I don’t agree with Christie much, but he is right on this. In fact, it conflicts with both the rights of the parents and the “body” rights of children in general.
Remember, if it is your “body” and the government shouldn’t be able to control what you do with it, that doesn’t only apply to just “abortion” and reproductive rights, it applies to every other issue that concerns your body under the sun – including vaccinations. Unfortunately, this rather simple level of consistency is not only rejected by some liberals, but is lambasted as irresponsible.
What’s gets even more bizarre is that condemnation of people who hold “anti-vax” positions aren’t just limited to liberals, but to conservatives as well. The “anti-vaccination” movement actually started on the left, but then was taken up as well by religious conservatives and now millennial libertarian/liberal types. This is actually bi-partisan support and opposition on the vaccination debate.
You Don’t Own Your Body
Okay, at some level I see their point when it comes to vaccination of kids about to enter a school. If a disease would spread unchecked from your kid, because you don’t want to get a vaccination, I could see arguments as to why you shouldn’t be able to send your kids to that school. In fact, the Supreme Court has ruled that if you wish to put your kid in a public school, they must be vaccinated. (This is all the more reason to homeschool and give your kids an actual education.)
I however reject this totalitarian idea that the parents must comply and then force their kids to get a vaccination. I can understand if the kids demand one, but they so often don’t. Leave it up to some of these liberals – and even conservatives as well – to politicize the issue and suggest quasi-fascist like ideas of control upon the populace despite it being our “bodies”. Conservative leaning The Federalist believes that opponents to vaccination simply don’t understand it:
Calls to jail ‘anti-vax’ parents, for instance, strike me as extreme and disturbing. But vaccination is not about protecting the vaccinated so much as it is about protecting others from disease-carriers. Vaccines are properly understood not on the basis of narrow self-interest but as a defense of the human species.
Speaking of calls to jail people and/or parents who won’t vaccinate their kids, Mr. Alex Berezow in an opinion column for USA Today, appears to be sick to the point of twisted in strong tyrannical state power and the “collective good” in his article entitled: “Jail ‘anti-vax’ parents.” Yes, he actually said that. We’ve heard about the dangers of radical individualism upon American culture, but never forget the effect of radical collectivism upon the culture with statements like this, “Put simply, no person has the right to threaten the safety of his community.”
I can’t help but shake my head in dismay at the implications of that statement. Yes, an individual must consider the impact of their actions upon a community, but that doesn’t automatically equate to trumping individual rights.
Employing Common Sense
Unlike some folks, I don’t actually oppose the concept of vaccinations. I do however want to make sure they have been thoroughly tested and I also don’t trust our government in this regards – and no, that doesn’t make me some tinfoil hat conspiracy theorist. I just firmly believe that “choice” as my liberal friends seem to selectively apply should most certainly apply here.
Rand Paul – love him or hate him – articulated this point in a CNBC interview about the subject:
“I’m not arguing vaccines are a bad idea,” Paul said. “I think they’re a good thing. But I think the parent should have some input. The state doesn’t own the children. Parents own the children.”
It is here yet again, that I find myself in agreement not only in agreement with Paul, but with the hippies, treehugger, eco-friendly folks, vegans, organic foods people, ect on yet another issue. I continue to shock myself. I don’t care if the science is 100% in favor and support of vaccination. Choice on an individual level isn’t sacrificed even if it is.
Mr. Henfling is essentially saying that the argument of its “your” body only applies to reproductive issues. Good to know there is a principle level of consistency at the core.
I wonder what other things we can force upon people in the name of “social responsibility.” Note that scary word of “compulsory” and how it usually impairs the freedom of others. I guess that doesn’t matter if you can justify it under “social responsibility”.