From the community editorial board: vaccine protests

Last weekend 200 people marched through Boulder County to protest the vaccine needs for indoor settings. Your take?

It is absolutely the right of people not to be vaccinated. Everyone should have control of his own body and have a say on what composes. In addition, state and local governments, public schools, companies and individuals have the right to protect themselves and their workers, their children and their operations and to require vaccination within their spaces.

Most people I have spoken and have chosen not to be vaccinated have refused the vaccine because of fear; maybe they have had bad reactions to vaccines in the past, maybe they are afraid of needles, maybe they are suspicious of science. Who knows? What we do know, though, is that their choice has an impact on others by infecting potentially themselves and others with a disease that can have lasting effects on health and potentially cause death. Each person has to balance the risks and rewards and make the decision for itself – it is the right and responsibility of a free people.

There is no world of free people where a person can make a choice and expect it to have no consequences. If you choose not to get the vaccine, you should also understand that you may be excluded from certain activities because you can potentially put other people at risk. You can protest that it’s not fair, raise awareness about your cause, but the public doesn’t have to accept it.

Doug Hamilton, hamilton1801@aim.com


Since last week’s anti-vaccine march was peaceful – the property was not destroyed and neither the baseball bats nor the AR-15s were brandished – this meets the current low bar for a successful protest. However, this one struck me as a bit “meh”. Maybe that was the subject. He challenged the recent Polis government decree requiring vaccines for attendees of indoor events of more than 500 people. The governor was responding to a spike in COVID-19 cases and fears that such events could be super-spreading events for the community. Large indoor events are not essential (they usually involve indoor concerts and sporting events, and places of worship are excluded from the limitation). An alternative is to ban such events altogether. The governor’s order seems a reasonable solution for a society weary of COVID-19 cases and canceled events.

At the end of the day, the protest made me smile, as do most peaceful protests. Not because I agree or disagree with what has been protested. Rather, because such marches are the hallmark of a free society. Americans start the practice as early as elementary school – to protest against everything from national and global issues like gun laws and climate change, to more local issues like cancellation of snow days and quality. school lunches. An event doesn’t need violence to make it interesting. The protests have brought us smart signs, burnt flags, sit-ins, all forms of nudity and costume, a variety of crochet items and street theater, all of which should be designed to open the mind. and persuade. A good protest is as American as an apple pie.

To the vaccine protesters, I may disagree with your cause, but you have every right to try to change the governor’s mind. To all of you, continue to demonstrate.

Andrew Shoemaker, ashoemaker@sgslitigation.com


Before entering the field, I’ll give you my summary: I’m pro-vaccination and against the federal vaccine mandates.

Let’s start with the protests. I guess we all stand up for the right to protest peacefully. While the Liberals seem to be doing the majority of protests (BLM, Occupy Wall Street, etc.), they don’t have a monopoly on them. Protesting against government mandates was fundamental to the birth of this nation.

I have no problem with the county-wide vaccination mandate for large optional indoor gatherings, as no one is required to go to these gatherings. On the flip side, the proposed federal mandate on vaccines for companies with more than 500 employees, which fortunately died in the Senate, threatened people’s livelihoods.

Distrust of government is in American DNA. And mistrust is not just among far-right conservatives, but even among liberals. A protester was holding a sign proclaiming that he was “100% liberal”. Vaccination mandates have driven many of those hesitant about the vaccine to fierce resistance.

Is this a hill to die on? I do not think so. I’m vaccinated because I don’t want to get sick, even though I’m not that concerned about COVID-19. Too much fear of COVID-19 is not good, because it gets you nowhere. Like the flu, it is here for the long haul. Maybe forever. Some of us get the flu shot every year. Most of us don’t, however. This is our future with COVID-19.

That’s not to say vaccines aren’t a good idea – they are. This means that we should not further divide our nation by adopting mandates. Yes, federal courts have upheld vaccination warrants under certain circumstances, but the stick is never the best choice and it shouldn’t be the first choice either.

It is important to remember that the protesters are not protesting against the vaccine but rather against the warrants. I love being able to climb the G1 climbing hall without a mask, but for that I have to show proof of vaccination. It’s a great incentive.

Democratic Senator Joe Manchin says “push, don’t penalize”. An incentive policy could have a similar effect on the number of vaccinations without further polarizing the country with expensive warrants.

Bill Wright, bill@wwwright.com


So my take on this is … OK? Here’s the thing, if you want to protest and walk for something that you believe in, good for you. If you do it peacefully and without disturbing the peace, walk as much as you want. The law gives us the right to meet. Therefore, if you stick to what you need to protest safely, go for it.

The only time you will find me at odds with protests is if acts of violence, vandalism, harassment and hate speech are involved. These things are not part of peaceful protests and therefore are not part of our rights as citizens. Let me be very clear – whichever side of the issue you find yourself on today, I think organized and peaceful expressions of opinion are fine. I think the passport issue dates back to 1984, but what are you going to do at this point? We are moving from a pandemic to an endemic, so we’re bound to see some disturbing approaches as we navigate something unprecedented. As tangential thought, all of these 200 people can have different reasons for their position. I have a hard time condemning each of these people for their stance on vaccine requirements despite my instincts. I’m not a big fan of general statements or assumptions about groups of people. The bottom line is that if there is no physical or bodily harm caused as a result of the protest, I think people should keep walking for whatever they want since this right is granted to us. Just in case anyone is wondering, by the way, I’m on double vaxx, masked and waiting for a callback.

Emily Walsh, emilyallenwalsh@gmail.com

About Michael C. Lovelace

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