Beware of the push to mandate COVID vaccination
In June, 2020, the FDA said final approval of the mRNA COVID vaccines should take up to two years. (As of 8/22/21, these were all currently experimental vaccines.) But on July 30, 2021 STAT News noted the final approval time would be condensed into six months at the urging of unnamed lawmakers and health experts and that, “It would be a powerful tool in convincing the unvaccinated to get their shots.” A week later, on August 8, 2021 the Associated Press reported Dr. Fauci as saying: “I hope—I don’t predict—I hope that it will be within the next few weeks. I hope it’s within the month of August.”
Unsurprisingly, then, the Wall Street Journal reported today (8/23/2021) that the Pfizer vaccine has now been fully approved:
The FDA, under pressure to give COVID-19 vaccines full approval swiftly, made its decision less than four months after Pfizer began its approval submission. The process of reviewing applications normally takes up to approximately 10 months.
Pressure to vaccinate
Note that on Meet the Press (8/8/21), Dr. Fauci said “…you’re going to see the empowerment of local enterprises giving mandates…colleges, universities, places of business, a whole variety.… You want to persuade them…. But for those who do not want, I believe mandates at the local level need to be done.” Fauci says the Delta variant is the reason for supporting vaccine mandates. But news out of Minnesota finds that COVID vaccine effectiveness against the Delta variant as of July, 2021 for the Pfizer vaccine was only 42%, and 76% for Moderna.
Dr. Vinay Prasad, a public health professor and past NIH Fellow, suggests Fauci’s shifting statements on COVID 19 “herd immunity” do not give the public much confidence. Fauci said, “When polls said only about half of all Americans would take a vaccine, I was saying herd immunity would take 70 to 75 percent… .Then, when newer surveys said 60 percent or more would take it, I thought, ‘I can nudge this up a bit’, so I went to 80, 85.” Fauci stunned Dr. Prasad: “Fauci is…basing his statements on what he thinks the public will accept, and to what degree his rhetoric might help vaccination efforts, and…the absolutely stunning part, he is admitting this openly to a reporter for the New York Times.…”
New cases of COVID-19 peaked…from more than 300,000 per day on Jan. 8 to around 55,000 on Feb. 21.… By Feb. 21, only 5.9% of Americans had received two shots, yet there had been an 82% decline in new cases.… The best explanation for declining rates of COVID-19 appears to be previous infections….”
An analysis of the entire Israeli population concluded that both mRNA shots and prior COVID infection, “are effective against both subsequent SARS-CoV-2 infection and other COVID-19–related outcomes.… This puts into question the need to vaccinate recent (up to six month) previously-infected individuals.”
Further, Fauci’s proposed rapid-fire “review” for final approval of COVID 19 shots leads to violations of the June, 2020 FDA guidance for final approval: “Follow-up of study participants for COVID-19 outcomes (in particular, for severe COVID-19 disease manifestations) should continue…ideally at least one to two years, to assess duration of protection….” STAT noted that for final vaccine approval, “The process requires FDA staff to review millions of pages of complex data, conduct plant inspections, and negotiate with Pfizer over … the FDA’s approved label and the company’s postmarketing responsibilities.” We now know all this is being bypassed.
Given the abrupt CDC mask policy reversal requiring even vaccinated persons to wear masks indoors in areas of high transmission, no one should be surprised that skepticism of mRNA shots remains. But while “booster shots” are being prepared for the fully vaccinated because immunity from the FDA authorized shots has waned, Fauci wants FDA final approval to make mandates easier to impose. This will not increase confidence in the safety and efficacy of COVID vaccines or the integrity of the FDA. Indeed, three New England Journal of Medicine authors, who conditionally support vaccine mandates, acknowledge:
[E]xcept for influenza vaccination of health care workers, mandates have not been widely used for adults.… The fact that a vaccine has received Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval…is an insufficient basis on which to conclude that it should be required. FDA approval…may be based on very limited evidence and consciously or unconsciously influenced by the intense pressure to speed countermeasures to market.
Are the private institutions pushing mandates (businesses, schools, churches) prepared to be sued for violating personal conscience rights under the First Amendment or federal or state Religious Freedom laws? Are they willing to accept liability for possible adverse reactions?
All current FDA authorized COVID vaccines (as of 8/22/21) are linked to abortion. Will Dr. Fauci’s “guidance” and FDA approval of the COVID vaccines be used by lawmakers to compel Americans who believe in the sanctity of each human life to take vaccines tested on or derived in part from preborn children killed by abortion?
Distinguished Catholic University Law Professor, Robert Destro, who served on the U. S. Civil Rights Commission and as Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, has warned that “Guidance” from the CDC does not have the force of law and cannot repeal existing civil and human rights protections in federal and state laws:
Employers who mandate vaccines without allowing for medical exemptions run the risk of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act, and both State and federal laws require accommodation of religious objections. But the real ticking time-bomb is civil liability for adverse effects. If businesses mandating vaccines think that CDC “Guidance” will protect them from liability for known adverse effects, they are delusional. [personal communication]
Fauci and other vaccine promoters have had to claim that, contrary to published and reviewed studies, drugs like Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) or Ivermectin could not safely and effectively treat COVID because federal law states the FDA Commissioner may only issue an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), “…when there are no adequate, approved, and available alternatives.” However, Dr. Peter McCullough and at least 250 doctors treated between 10,000 and 15,000 patients a day using HCQ or Ivermectin and other drugs approved by the FDA for other purposes. Dr. McCullough believes their approach “could reduce hospitalization and death by 85%” if used widely across the US.
At the same time, adverse vaccine reactions are largely ignored. Between December 4, 2020 and August 13, 2021, the CDC’s Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) counted 595,622 adverse events following COVID vaccination, 13,086 deaths, 81,850 serious injuries including deaths, 17,228 permanently disabled, 53,979 hospitalized and 13,811 life threatening events. The U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services states that, “Underreporting is one of the main limitations of…VAERS.”
Catholic bishops and conscientious objection
The U. S. Catholic Bishops are split on whether or not to authorize diocesan priests to write letters supporting individual Catholics who object on conscience grounds to taking an abortion derived vaccine. The Washington Post reports (6/19/21) that bishops of six dioceses (Philadelphia, San Diego, New York, Los Angeles, Honolulu and Camden, N.J.) have instructed priests to not give formal support to parishioners who object to taking an abortion-linked COVID vaccine.
But Catholic Bishops in Colorado have prepared an excellent summary of Catholic and Natural Law teaching on vaccination. You can download a letter to give to your parish priest (if your bishop has not forbidden priests from signing such letters) or use it yourself to explain your opposition to being compelled to take a COVID vaccine linked to the taking of the life of a child via induced abortion.
As the FDA grants final approval to the COVID vaccines, that will give impetus to COVID vaccine mandates by businesses and public institutions. But as Professor Destro explained, such FDA action does not eliminate constitutional rights and protections of persons. Even if the FDA gives final approval to COVID 19 vaccines, Congress can decline federal funds to implement COVID vaccine mandates that do not make exemptions for self-determined reasons of conscience, religion and medical concern. If such measures are defeated, there will be a record vote to show the public where our representatives stand.
Dr. Fauci noted that the COVID 19, “vaccine requirements will come at the state and local levels—and…they’ll proliferate when the Food and Drug Administration gives full approval to coronavirus vaccines….” But like Congress, state legislatures and county officials can prohibit state and local funds for implementing mandates that do not allow exemptions for reasons of conscience, religion and medical concerns. Again, if these efforts fail, there should be a public record of where these officials stand. Consider urging your Congressional Representative, your two U. S. Senators, your state legislators, and your local county or city officials to ban public funds or resources to implement or assist in implementing COVID vaccine mandates, especially those that do not provide for self-declared conscience, religious or medical exemptions.
CatholicCulture.org is not a political action organization but, in furtherance of its Catholic mission, authorizes free distribution of this analysis of political initiatives which violate a Catholic understanding of the human person. For those unfamiliar with how to contact their Federal State and local representatives, we also provide the following public links to their email addresses and local phone numbers:
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Bob Marshall served 26 years in the Virginia House of Delegates and was the chief House sponsor of the 2006 voter-approved Virginia Marriage Amendment and a ban on late term abortion. He recently wrote Reclaiming the Republic: How Christians and Other Conservatives Can Win Back America (TAN Books). Previously, he co-authored Blessed are the Barren, a social history of Planned Parenthood (Ignatius Press). Finally, don’t miss Bob’s Civics Lesson for Catholics in the Catholic Culture Podcast Episode 17. See the full bio.