Mandates won’t solve the Covid crisis

Asking Americans to give up their personal freedom to not vaccinate is akin to asking them to give up their fantasies of taking on the government with their God Given Right to own guns.

Of course, they cherry pick the meaning of the 2nd Amendment which was written in the day of black powder pistols and muskets, including the always ignored part about having to be part of a well-regulated militia.

With Republicans engineering the death and destruction of American lives at a record pace through their gerrymandering of voting districts, we’ve seen such an interest in both protecting the right to shoot almost anyone on sight, removing all barriers like training or certification to carrying concealed weapons, or even as one local State Representative, Niraj Antani, suggested- allowing 18 year-olds to carry long guns in schools (only after the fact did he clarify this only to be in white rural and suburban districts, not urban ones).

The votes against mask mandates, testing requirements, vaccinations continue this trend toward protecting “Freedom” instead of “Life.” Except when it comes to babies in Texas where we’ll put a $10K bounty out for abortion hunters. Yes, we care about unborn babies, but school shootings by teens, or Kyle Rittenhouse are clearly the fault of the parents- not our crazy love of guns.

I enlisted in “a well-regulated militia” in 1981. The Army made gun safety a very serious part of basic training. However, we still had an instance where after a day at the range, the company was lined up, and commanded to “Inspection Arms” – a drill that’s supposed to make sure no rounds are in any chambers (apparently, they don’t teach this at actors training camp). At either step 14 or 15, a young Black female, who hadn’t properly checked her chamber- discharged a round. It skimmed over the Drill Sergeant’s hat- and that was the last we saw of the female trainee.

Throughout my Army career, which luckily, never included deployment to a combat zone, there was never a time that I had possession of a weapon with ammunition that wasn’t on a range. Most of the time, I was around a weapon was either pulling guard duty in the company armory, where all the weapons were locked. If there was ammunition there, I never knew. Even when pulling gate guard duty, I was issued an M16, but never any ammunition. Only the MPs would have guns that could be used.

When I visited Israel, where guns are everywhere, and loaded, I was intensely curious about who “qualified to carry” and why. The first obvious difference is that everyone (except the religious zealots) serves in the Israeli Defense Force. All have been trained, tested, and screened for mental illness before handing them a weapon. The second difference is that, in order to carry, you have to have a demonstrated reason, and even then, ammunition is limited. Everyone who carries, also must qualify on a regular basis and have mental health checks.. And, of course, the country is almost always under attack by people who believe that Israelis and the State of Israel are illegitimate.

In the United States, where gun deaths wildly exceed those in the State of Israel, we’re also in a state of war- a war on drugs, a war on poverty and we have a police force that’s running around in military gear with military surplus vehicles looking more like RoboCop. Americans also have a penchant for shooting ourselves with our ready access to unregulated guns.

And with every shooting comes a price tag, that we all pay, but willfully ignore.

The bill for caring for gunshot victims ultimately is on us. It’s passed on through the highest health care costs in the world, with the least efficient outcomes.

Because we don’t have national health care, and we pretend to be a humane and “Christian” nation, the government covers the costs, and it comes back to us via higher taxes and debt ceilings and health care costs for those of us who can afford “health insurance.”

If you are a member of congress, or the military, a veteran, or a government employee- you have health care- the rest of you are at the whim of a mobster-like legalized gambling operation- you can pay them now, with the promise of a lower bill, or pay out the nose for care when needed. Health insurance is the number one obstacle for small businesses to compete with big business for talent.

Which leads us back to Covid and vaccine mandates. Forcing the freedom nuts to vaccinate will never work. Even charging them for Covid care should they fall ill doesn’t remotely have a chance of working, since declaring bankruptcy and setting up a GoFundMe is the standard operating procedure for cancer care.

The only logical choice is to treat the unvaccinated the same as a pregnant woman in Texas: You can’t get treated if you aren’t vaccinated, and if a doctor is found to treat unvaccinated Covid victims, they should be able to be sued by the rest of us for $10,000.

There is no reason to have our medical facilities overrun by these people at this point, and no amount of money should be spent on curing the stupid. This is Darwin’s way of thinning the herd, and we should allow natural selection to run its course.

That’s freedom in action.

 

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