If you needed further evidence that cultural and political chaos reigns, or that scientific scholarship is neither valued nor trusted, I bring you to your attention to lawsuits filed on behalf of the thousands of Los Angeles police and firefighters who refuse to to get vaccinated.
Instead, twist and run first responders whose oath is to serve and protect and to endanger themselves in the interests of public safety.
The lawsuits argue that the city’s mandate to vaccinate all employees by October 5 is unconstitutional and a violation of their rights to due process. Another argument is that those who have recovered from COVID-19 are protected by natural immunity and do not need vaccines.
About 3,000 LAPD members are expected to apply for medical or religious exemptions, and hundreds of firefighters who call themselves “freedom fighters” are campaigning for more resistance.
“It is advisable to encourage all members to join the fight for freedom,” said a bulletin that was sent to the firefighters on Thursday evening.
LA City Atty. Mike Feuer doesn’t seem to be concerned.
“The US Supreme Court and courts across the country have upheld the government’s vaccination requirements, and they did so because they said welfare requires it,” Fire said.
Yet it is not clear what happens when employees refuse to be stung, regardless of the outcome of the lawsuit. Will you be fired? Exposed? Leave of absence for an indefinite period?
There will have to be a price because you cannot place an order without serious consequences for those who ignore it. And sources say everything is on the table right now while city officials and union leaders talk about it.
“We hire as we are asked, and hopefully this process will result in our employees being vaccinated, period,” said City Councilor Matt Szabo.
District officials may also have to make a decision about what to do with resistance fighters in the sheriffs and fire departments. On a private social media site shown to me by a county source, county firefighters exchanged information about discredited COVID-19 funds, developed strategies to combat vaccine mandates, and attacked the county board of directors.
“All of these MFs on BOS need to be kicked out!” Said a post suggesting the superiors were in a closed meeting so they could kiss the back end of Governor Gavin Newsom. “These are ALL ENEMIES OF THE FIRST RESPONDERS!”
Actually, politicians and the public are anything but enemies of first responders, who are often referred to as heroes. But vaccine resistances are wasting that goodwill by rejecting the simplest, safest, and most effective means to limit the spread of COVID-19 and save lives.
One argument I’ve gotten repeatedly from firefighters is that they survived COVID-19 and their natural immunity is as good or better than what the vaccine offers. So why take the risk of side effects? Along with this argument is the claim that this is a case of government abuse.
But dr. Timothy Brewer, a UCLA epidemiologist, has answers.
“As for the government transgression, anyone who attended public school had to be vaccinated,” Brewer said. “So it’s kind of silly to say that I’m fine getting vaccines for a public school, but it’s government excess telling me to get a COVID-19 vaccine.”
While there are some side effects of vaccines, Brewer said, they are statistically tiny and overwhelmed by the extraordinary benefits of vaccines, “which are among the most extensively tested vaccines of all time” and have prevented millions of cases of serious illness, hospitalizations and deaths .
As for the natural immunity argument, Brewer cited numerous studies and mounting evidence that vaccination provides additional protection for those who have natural immunity. He said that it “not only boosts their immune response, but also protects against variants they may not have had and protects them from infection, which reduces transmission and protects those around them.”
It is also now well known that the vast majority of people who become seriously ill, need hospitalization, and die are not vaccinated. One would think that with 10 COVID-19 deaths among LAPD employees and thousands of infections, the entire force would have understood the news by now. But about half of the members of the LAPD and LAFD are not fully vaccinated.
The good news, it could be said, is that thousands of first responders have drank their juice. I asked a vaccinated firefighter if it could help this group to convince the freedom fighters who are de facto fighting for freedom to keep this virus alive, to keep companies from reopening completely, to endanger students, to spread disinformation in order to discredit science and send more people to the cemetery.
“The ones who get teased are not very loud and the others are loud and no one wants a fight,” he said. “It’s polarized along political lines and there is no point in talking to them.”
I asked him when and why he was vaccinated.
“I got mine as soon as it was available. I wanted to protect my parents and my family. … It was a breeze, “he said, adding that at the height of the pandemic, he was stressed about contracting the virus in the workplace and spreading it to others. As a first aider, he said, he thought it advisable to act in the interests of “the common good”.
Another firefighter told me that he got himself vaccinated as soon as it was available and he was reluctant to face opposition from colleagues, which surprised him.
“I never realized that people weren’t really going to get it and risk getting COVID and passing it on to other members of the organization or the public,” he said. “We are setting a bad example… People seek advice from us to protect them and to look after them and their property in times of need. We deliberately ignore this duty because of these weirdos who are … misinformed. “
A retired police officer and firefighter told me he felt fortunate and privileged to work for taxpayers in the interests of public health and safety. Those who oppose the vaccine took an oath and “betrayed the same citizens who swore to protect them”.
We hope that the mood will prevail and that there will be a harsh penalty if the oath is broken.