I appreciate Mr. Rudick’s exercise of his First Amendment rights in his letter to you concerning the First Amendment Sanctuary Resolution in Westmoreland County. However, I want to point out that the county supervisors did not, as he states “reject the only effective means of curtailing the pandemic - vaccinations and masking.” Rather, they rejected MANDATES for the same, that would force every person to take the vaccine and wear masks regardless of their personal health risks and religious beliefs. Mandates would require one to choose between taking the vaccine, no matter the health dangers they face, or losing their job. The vaccines have been approved for use on an emergency basis. And therefore the vaccines are still experimental. The long term side-effects on children and pregnant women, as well as persons with co-morbidity issues have not been fully evaluated, among several other issues. That being said, I do believe it is wise for those who want to be vaccinated to receive the vaccination shots and the booster.
In addition, mandates make no allowance for people who have contracted Covid 19 and subsequently recovered, therefore have natural immunity to the disease, according to “NIH Research Matters, Jan 26 2021.” Vaccinations do not stop the spread of covid because break-through infections sometimes occur and the vaccinated can spread the disease, even though they are asymptomatic.
Also, the number of adverse effects of the vaccine recorded on CDC’s VAER System is cause for some people to question the safety of the vaccine for themselves.
While there is not a question that vaccinations make a great difference in preventing serious illness and death, they do not prevent the spread of the disease. It is possible for vaccinated people to spread Covid 19. (Cleveland Clinic, Health Essentials, Aug. 5, 2021 )
As for constitutional rights not being absolute, I take strong exception. The Declaration of Independence acknowledges that these rights are given to us by our Creator, not by any government. The Bill of Rights enumerates those rights, among which is the right “to be secure in their persons.” If a person cannot be searched without express due process, they certainly cannot be injected with an experimental vaccine without their permission.
“Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” -Benjamin Franklin