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Letter: We need COVID-19 vaccine mandates to counter 'snake oil salesmen'

Bribes aren't enough for some people, says writer
COVID-19 vaccine
A senior male is about to receive a COVID-19 coronavirus vaccine. - Photograph via Getty Images


The American Medical Association is now calling for a COVID-19 vaccine mandate as the only way to stop the virus.

Vaccine mandates are not new. They have been used to fight polio, small pox, measles, mumps and rubella to name a few. What is new is a plethora of conspiracy theories spawned on the internet by who knows whom.

The AMA states that the science is clear that the vaccines are safe and effective in battling the virus. People who ignore science and put their trust in snake oil salesmen are endangering the lives of themselves and everyone else and particularly children who aren't eligible yet for a vaccine and the medical profession who are duty bound to treat everyone no matter how reckless they are.

Voluntary measures don't work for everyone, and bribery and financial inducements don't work for true believers who are convinced that the vaccine is worse than the disease. We have laws against driving the wrong way on the freeway or firing guns in crowed places, but we don't have laws against a person infected with COVID-19 going out in public and potentially killing others. If people are callous and selfish enough to evade the vaccine, thereby prolonging the virus and ensuring that more deadly mutations will develop, they should be forced to have a vaccine just as someone driving the wrong direction on the freeway will be corrected one way or another.

You can only humour people's ignorance so far. We live in the 21st century. We are supposed to be reasonable and think scientifically. We can't allow people with hair brained notions put everyone at risk.

Dan Theal, Burnaby


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