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Macron said Covid-19 jabs would be optional… so a Europe-wide vaccine passport should be a reason for France to leave the EU

Macron said Covid-19 jabs would be optional… so a Europe-wide vaccine passport should be a reason for France to leave the EU
It’s unacceptable that the EU is pushing big brother authoritarianism on its member states via vaccine passports. French President Emmanuel Macron should stay true to his word and take a stand against this nanny statism.

After all, Macron couldn’t have been more clear when he said in a national address last November that Covid-19 vaccines would not be mandatory. And that’s exactly as it should be. 

No one should have the right to dictate what substances you inject into your body – and especially not the state. The rights of the collective end where the rights of the individual begin, and that’s precisely with one’s own physical being. If someone is worried about catching Covid-19, then they have every right to get vaccinated in the interests of self-protection, but no one should have any ability to impose it on anyone else.

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Given the debate over the duration of any Covid-19 antibodies, it’s unclear exactly how often people are going to have to pump any vaccine into their body. Will it be every few months? Once a year? 

Nor is it clear exactly how the virus will mutate in future, or how fast Covid-19 could become just another banal seasonal virus floating around out there. For those who are in good health, with no pre-existing medical issues, they may consider the injection of a vaccine to be worse than contending with the virus itself. And they should have every right to make that choice.

Yet we’re now being told that the European Commission will table a vaccine passport concept this month, effectively suppressing individual choice over inoculation. It would be required for travel within the European Union or to avoid quarantine upon arrival. 

Some countries have already adapted the concept for use on their own territory in the form of a ‘green pass’ required for access to venues such as gyms, theaters, concert venues, movie theaters, and restaurants. The idea seems to have initially taken hold in Israel, where people have to flash a digital pass showing proof of vaccination everywhere they go in order to have any semblance of a normal life. 

Now everywhere from Paris to New York, authorities are considering the idea of people having to show that they’ve taken either the vaccine or, alternatively, proof that they’ve had a giant Q-Tip shoved up their nose within the last three days, and have tested negative for Covid.

Any such banalization of Covid PCR testing as a prerequisite for daily living means that every few days, people would have to line up at a testing facility – possibly for hours, given how relatively few PCR testing facilities exist in some countries – all just to prove that they don’t carry this particular virus. The idea is absolutely absurd. Because what about the next virus that overwhelms hospitals, as French newspaper titles suggested already occurred here in France in 2018, in 2017, in 2016 and in 2015? In fact, it seems like there’s barely a flu season that goes by during which French hospitals aren’t overwhelmed. 

And yet, the flu shot has always been optional. Every year here in France and in North America, there’s a massive annual push for everyone to run out and get the seasonal flu shot regardless of personal circumstance or susceptibility. The notion of sacrificing domain over one’s own body – which is about the only thing that we ultimately control in our time on this planet – under the pretext of the greater collective has long been the propaganda imposed on society annually for years, even as some doctors privately advise patients who aren’t at risk not to bother with it.

Once freedom is taken away, it’s rarely ever restored – particularly if the populace has grown resigned, complacent, or indifferent. Covid-19 vaccine passports or territorial green passes could very well lead to more impositions that hijack personal autonomy. Because what exactly is stopping any creeping authoritarianism once states accept that they can force individuals into a system whereby everyday life is impossible unless they jump the hoops and tick the boxes dictated by the state?

Covid-19 is just one virus. But what about next year’s flu? Is that going to be added to the vaccine passport, as well, given that every year it seems to overwhelm hospitals? It’s just too tempting for governments not to throw more bricks onto a foundation like a passport or pass that they’ve already created and that citizens have already accepted, lest they find themselves effectively banned from everything that they used to take for granted in their daily life.

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In the extreme, such access passes could slide toward something like China’s digital social credit system, introduced in 2014, that pegs everyday access to things like travel and public sector employment to points earned or lost in relation to professional and personal interactions, court records, financial and physical health.

If the European Commission insists on Covid vaccination passes, then it’s up to Macron to keep his promise to voters and safeguard individual French citizens’ right of personal autonomy. Even if that means pulling France out of the European Union. 

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

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