think globally, act locally
Here’s a chance for action, a thing you can do today to register your preference for sanity. If you live in a red community in a red state, you probably don’t need to bother, but every place can use the reminder.
The pressure has been top-down, rolling into our lives from the likes of Anthony Fauci and the CDC. (And from what’s-his name, you know. The guy! Come on, man!) But the enforcers have mostly lived much closer to home: cities, school districts, and the corporations where people go to work in the morning.
The impetus has been centralized, but much of the action has been localized.
As the wave of our long moral panic rolls back, a wave of localized justice rolls in. Here are dueling headlines from 2021 and 2022:
And about that mRNA mandate in San Diego, here’s the news from this week: “A judge ruled today that a federal lawsuit challenging San Diego’s vaccine mandate for city employees can proceed.”
Local action is working.
Remember that Los Angeles County’s ghoulish and bizarre public health director warned, last month, that she was going to re-implement a countywide mask mandate on July 29, and remember that a few city governments immediately told her they wouldn’t help the county to enforce the thing — after which the ghoul quickly checked the data again and discovered that a mask mandate actually isn’t needed at all. That’s all it took: Simple, direct, immediate, local refusal.
As I’ve said before, act as if. If you live in a Deep Blue zone, your argument for sanity and against performative public health mandates won’t be greeted warmly. City councils and school boards are still committed to sneering at anti-vaxxers, and will go on playacting that posture even as the evidence piles up on the other side of the scale. They aren’t thinking, and they won’t; they’re testing the social current, and trying to swim in its direction. But right is right, and wrong is wrong, and you have to speak truth. You have to keep loading the scale. Mindless cowards, local officials who embraced hysteria because of social pressure and status anxiety, will change their own course when they perceive that the social course has changed. In a declining society, leaders mostly follow; keep offering them a path.
So. My small town school board passed an mRNA mandate for all school employees, last year, and then fired school staff who refused the injections. I sent them this message this week, and I invite you to cut and paste for your own local use:
I ask for a response to this message.
On September 14, 2021, the SPUSD Board of Education authorized a Covid-19 vaccination requirement for all SPUSD employees. You have since fired five SPUSD employees who declined the mRNA injections.
On August 5, 2021, in an interview on CNN — prior to that board vote — CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said of the available Covid-19 vaccines, "But what they can't do anymore is prevent transmission."
On April 15, 2022, a member of the SPUSD Board of Education, Michele Kipke, participated in a panel discussion with Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer in which Dr. Ferrer repeatedly and explicitly said that "vaccinated people are highly likely to become infected" and "the vaccines don't work so great."
On July 22, 2022, in an interview on Fox News, former White House Covid-19 task force director Dr. Deborah Birx said, "I knew these vaccines were not going to protect against infection."
And on August 11, 2022, the CDC issued new Covid-19 guidance about the available vaccines: "Receipt of a primary series alone, in the absence of being up to date with vaccination through receipt of all recommended booster doses, provides minimal protection against infection and transmission. Being up to date with vaccination provides a transient period of increased protection against infection and transmission after the most recent dose, although protection can wane over time."
The August 11 CDC guidance also says this: "CDC’s COVID-19 prevention recommendations no longer differentiate based on a person’s vaccination status because breakthrough infections occur, though they are generally mild, and persons who have had COVID-19 but are not vaccinated have some degree of protection against severe illness from their previous infection."
Will the SPUSD learn from real-world experience and sharp changes in our understanding of these vaccines? There is no longer any justification for a Covid-19 vaccine requirement as a condition of employment. The CDC no longer differentiates based on a person’s vaccination status, but you do. Will you follow the CDC? You made policy with your feelings, rather than using data and knowledge, and you made an unreasonable choice. Will you fix it?
They have not responded, and likely won’t, but they’re going to keep hearing this from me. Keep going. Keep trying. Speak up in your own community, to your own local officials and to your neighbors. Be present, be persistent, communicate with firmness and clarity, and do not stop.