If you would not associate with someone who supported segregation for gay or black people, why are you associating with people who supported segregation for those who didn't want to inject themselves on command with a pharmaceutical product?
If you would not associate with someone who publicly ridiculed people for their religion or ethnicity, why are you associating with those who did the same to a persecuted minority who earnestly didn't want to take a particular drug?
If you think there was good reason (at the time) to believe the unvaccinated should be segregated from society, you might be surprised to learn many who historically supported tyrannical and unjust policies, likewise believed they had good reasons.
Ask yourself what the operating principle is. I imagine it's something like this: Everyone I know agrees it's wrong to denigrate people based on race, religion, ethnicity and sexual orientation. Many people I know are okay with it based on pharma non-compliance, i.e., It's wrong if everyone in my social and professional circles thinks it's wrong, otherwise it's okay.
Consider where that principle would have led were you around during some of the darker episodes of our past.
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Some of you might object to this thread of Twitter posts by saying, “Well, you have to understand. People were terrified at the time, and they thought the mRNA shots would extricate us from the pandemic.”
For starters, the shots weren’t available until a year later, by which time the infection fatality rate of covid was well known not to be much different than the flu. (It was more contagious, but if you did catch it, and many had by then, your chances of surviving were just as good.)
But for the sake of argument, let’s assume some people were still genuinely terrified (they were told to be) and believed sincerely the mRNA shot was the best way out. Does that absolve them of their bigotry toward innocent people who declined to inject medicine they didn’t want? It does not.
Whenever a minority is scapegoated for society’s ills, those encouraging the persecution believe it’s for good reason. Effective propaganda uses real-world fears, links them to the targeted group and impresses upon its audience the urgency of the cause.
That you have not been subject to the same pressures to mistreat black or gay people — in fact you are subject to opposite pressures — makes it hard to understand why people in the past would do such a thing.
But I imagine people in the future, looking back at those persecuting innocent people (not letting them attend restaurants and public spaces, firing them from their jobs, not letting their kids play sports, openly denigrating them in front of others, family members excommunicating them from Thanksgiving dinner) for not taking some medicine cooked up by large pharmaceutical conglomerates will feel the same way about this.
Of course, one might be tempted to point out, that while the situations might be analogous, they are far from identical, and there are important differences between the scapegoated groups. But that objection misses the point — it is not the similarity of those targeted that’s relevant, but of the intolerant people targeting them.
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So I go back to the initial thread and ask — if you are not willing to tolerate the bigotry and hate directed at historically-persecuted minorities for simply being who they are, why are you okay with those who did the same toward others for merely declining medicine they earnestly didn’t want?
I suspect the answer is mostly because overt racial/ethnic/religious bigotry is widely despised in polite society today, but bigotry against those with different views/decision-making heuristics is accepted. In other words, you will tolerate hateful, intolerant people if their hatred and intolerance was directed toward the right people.
The operating principle then isn’t rejecting intolerance and hatred, but rejecting the the kind that would get someone like you in trouble. The kind that was encouraged? That’s the kind for which you find excuses.
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I'm convinced those who tried to scapegoat people for earnest medical choices are the same kinds of people who would have scapegoated a person for his race or sexual orientation were those things permitted in their social and professional spheres. Opportunists waiting for the license.
The test of someone's tolerance isn't whether he's respectful to the groups he's incentivized to respect, but how he treats those society encourages him to hate. People revealed themselves these past couple years, and in many cases, it was ugly.