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Religious vaccine objections surge in some quarters

Hospitals and government agencies struggle to process a flood of exemption requests


Police officers treat an injured demonstrator at an anti-vaccination protest in front of Los Angeles City Hall. Associated Press/Photo by Damian Dovarganes (file)

Religious vaccine objections surge in some quarters

Six Los Angeles Police Department officers challenged aspects of the city’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate last week. They accuse the city of obstructing employee requests for religious exemptions to the mandate and intimidating unvaccinated officers.

In the federal lawsuit filed Sept. 11, the six officers offer a bevy of complaints—from allegations that the vaccine requirement violates due process by infringing on their “bodily integrity” to the policy’s failure to account for the natural immunity of those who have recovered from COVID-19. But the sharpest challenge is to the police department’s process—or lack thereof—for religious exemption requests.

Mayor Eric Garcetti signed an ordinance last month requiring all city employees to be vaccinated by Oct. 20 unless they have secured a medical or religious exemption. But the officers say the city provided no process for submitting requests and, when it finally opened an online portal, gave them only 72 hours to submit them.

Processing the exemptions is no small task. LAPD has upwards of 2,600 religious exemption applications, accounting for nearly a quarter of its workforce, reports The Los Angeles Times. That suggests either a highly religious workforce or, as some contend, rampant abuse of the exemption.

That trend is not limited to the LAPD. Nearly 100 Washington state troopers, healthcare workers, and firefighters filed a lawsuit on Sept. 10 accusing officials of unfairly requiring them to submit a questionnaire on religious sentiment, belief, and worship in order to get a vaccine exemption.

The reasons religious people object to receiving the coronavirus vaccine vary. Many objections stem from the vaccines’ connections to cell lines developed from the tissue of aborted babies. Pfizer and Moderna did not use fetal cell lines in the manufacture of their mRNA vaccines, but they did use them in their tests. Moderna exclusively produces mRNA vaccines, but Pfizer does other drug research on embryonic stem cells. Some pro-lifers object to supporting the company in any way, including by obtaining a COVID-19 vaccine. Attenuated virus shots such as the one made by Johnson & Johnson do use fetal cells in the manufacturing process.

Constitutional law experts agree employers risk lawsuits by challenging the sincerity of workers’ religious beliefs. “It’s very difficult to investigate sincerity,” University of Virginia law professor Douglas Laycock told WBEZ-FM in Chicago. “How do you decide what someone really believes in their heart of hearts about religion?”

Tightening requirements or even eliminating exemption requests may not make much difference. One study of the vaccination rate of California schoolchildren found it didn’t significantly change before and after the state removed a religious exemption. People find other ways such as medical exemptions to avoid the vaccine. Some also believe providing exemptions channels religious, medical, and broader fears and concerns in a less disruptive way.

No hearing is scheduled on the LAPD officers’ request for a court order forcing the police department to accept all medical and religious exemptions.


Steve West

Steve is a legal correspondent for WORLD. He is a graduate of World Journalism Institute, Wake Forest University School of Law, and N.C. State University. He worked for 34 years as a federal prosecutor and is now an attorney in private practice. Steve resides with his wife in Raleigh, N.C.

@slntplanet

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DAL

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E3hzoIBA4oI

AlanE

When people are wondering about how to make a religious objection for a vaccine, we have confused preferences with the core of our faith. There is no religious objection that isn't bad theology. It's a lot better to admit you just don't want to get a vaccine. Then we can have conversations that might lead somewhere.

NanamiroAlanE

Admitting you simply don't want the vaccine will just get you fired.
After weighing one's risk of a deadly case of Covid and finding that taking this sketchy vaccine that's been around for less than a year may be riskier or of comparable risk, a lot of people simply don't think its worth it. But that's not a good enough reason. Feeling like you are intentionally exposing your body to harm for no known benefit is a moral issue that we aren't allowed to make a decision on for ourselves.

AlanENanamiro

While I would concede that admitting you simply don't want the vaccine could get you fired, I believe you are underestimating the danger of invoking God's name where no divinely-revealed truth is at stake.

NanamiroAlanE

I agree. I'm don't think coming up with a "religious" reason that isn't legit, is honest.

DAL

https://currentpub.com/2021/09/24/thank-you-pastor-reverend-keith-marshall/

Ceelynn

Dal, please explain how being unvaccinated is selfish and inconsiderate. I'm struggling to understand how this is a one size fits all situation. I have a hard time telling people they must do something they don't want to do, especially if it could potentially cause them harm. I wouldn't want the responsibility of insisting someone vaccinate and then they experience harm from it. To me it would be better to let them choose to take that risk on their own.

DALCeelynn

See the following (And please only reply if you have read each):
https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2021/09/13/1036593269/coronavirus-alabama-43-icus-at-capacity-ray-demonia

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/newsletters/2021-09-05/the-unvaccinated-are-a-risk-to-all-of-us

https://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/anti-vaxxer-turns-vaccine-advocate-after-husband-dies-from-covid-19/2709975/

The issue is either ignorance or selfishness. Either one is getting a lot of people harmed, even killed. Frankly, at this point, it is hard to believe anyone would have to explain any of this. As most people know, any risk of taking the vaccine is far outweighed by the risks of not taking it. By far. One is eleven times more likely to die from Covid if unvaccinated. Is that a risk you are willing to take for yourself, your family, your friends? If you are, then the "risk" factor isn't the issue--something else must be at play.

https://apnews.com/article/science-health-coronavirus-pandemic-rochelle-walensky-centers-for-disease-control-and-prevention-31ddcca6119e018bd826d2a05df7f68b

CeelynnDAL

https://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/why-covid-19-vaccines-should-not-be-required-for-all-americans

DALCeelynn

One can find a minority opinion on anything--and that's what this is--a minority opinion. There's also people out there who don't think we landed on the moon. To decide not to get vaccinated is like deciding to drink and drive. I find that selfish and inconsiderate. Further, he may be a medical doctor, but no one taught him logic:
"Would we be so stern toward people making similar or worse health choices to smoke, drink alcohol or not wear a helmet when riding a bike?"

That's called a false analogy. None of those choices are contagious. If a person drinks themselves to death, that doesn't cause some other person to die of alcohol poisoning. Not so with the unvaccinated--their choice can affect others.

Further, he's just flat out wrong: "Those who choose not to get vaccinated are making a poor health decision at their own individual risk. They pose no public health threat to those already immune."

That is obviously false. They pose a risk of taking up an ICU bed someone else might need through no fault of their own. Also, a person with immunity, or who is vaccinated, can still get Covid. Even if they survive, there could be long-term damage, so it does still pose a risk. His is a minority view and not very well thought out.

For those who refused to be vaccinated and died, do you think their loved ones still think the risks of the vaccine were too great?

NanamiroDAL

A person should take the vaccine for themselves. I have no idea if the Bloomberg doctor's opinion is correct. I've heard the opposite opinion from other doctors.
If I have a 0.1% chance of dying of Covid, if I get it, but getting the vaccine reduces that to .01%, who cares? Either way, it is highly unlikely I will die of Covid AND I'm not risking short or long term risks from the vaccine. That should be my choice to make. Not yours. Not the CDC's. Not my bosses. Not Delta airlines.
It is incredibly selfish to force others to take medical risks in order to maybe, possibly, keep you from getting the sniffles ( I assume you are vaccinated and that will protect you from serious illness).
Ignorance goes both ways. Take a gander at VAERS reporting for Covid vaccines: https://medalerts.org/vaersdb/index.php
Compared to regular vaccines, these Covid vaccines aren't anywhere near as safe and shouldn't be forced on anyone.

DALNanamiro

An unvaccinated person is 11 times more likely to die from Covid than a vaccinated person.
https://www.npr.org/2021/09/10/1036023973/covid-19-unvaccinated-deaths-11-times-more-likely

These vaccines not only prevent hospitalization and possibly death, they also prevent transmission of the virus to others.
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/the-crucial-vaccine-benefit-were-not-talking-about-enough1/

The vaccines are safe and effective.
https://www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org/hometown-health/featured-topic/covid-19-vaccine-myths-debunked

People who are vaccinated can still get Covid from those who refuse to get vaccinated. The unvaccinated are a harm to themselves, their families, their friends/co-workers, and community. Your freedom to swing your fists, ends at my nose. Yes, the greater community does have a right to make people do the right thing when they fail to do it themselves. An example would be seatbelt laws.

The unvaccinated are no better than those who refuse to wear seatbelts or drink and drive. They are selfish and inconsiderate. There's too much credible information out there to claim ignorance at this point. There is no “freedom” or “liberty” to harm others. It is the very opposite of the Christian ethic of loving our neighbor and putting the needs of others first. They also take up ICU beds that could mean a person not getting one, who needs one through no fault of their own, unlike the unvaccinated person.

The almost 700,000 people who have died from Covid didn’t get the “sniffles.” They died horrible deaths on ventilators. Preventable deaths. What an ignorant and insensitive thing to suggest. People reading this have lost loved ones due to Covid. Do better.

NanamiroDAL

Saying I need to get vaccinated to protect the vaccinated people around me is like saying I need to wear a seatbelt so other seatbelt wearers won't die in car accidents. Huh?

"There's too much credible information out there to claim ignorance at this point." Where is the evidence that unvaccinated people have "killed" vaccinated people with Covid-19? You say there is so much "credible information" about this, but I haven't come across that data. I've heard the narrative, but that's not the same. Where are you finding this? If this were true, it would be proof the vaccines don't work unless the vaccinated are not exposed to someone with Covid (at least, apparently, an UNvaccinated person with Covid. Somehow vaccinated people with Covid aren't blamed for spreading the virus. Must be science).
You clearly don't think the vaccine will protect you from dying or being hospitalized from Covid-19. If you did, you wouldn't be so freaked out about unvaccinated people. I'm not sure why you are so passionate about making health decisions for others when you don't seem to think the vaccines actually work.

Your comment, "Yes, the greater community does have a right to make people do the right thing when they fail to do it themselves," makes my skin crawl. Seriously? I can't imagine wanting to force injections into peoples' arms to protect ME, or even my loved ones! Especially when my loved one's and I could be vaccinated ourselves! How is this "loving our neighbor"?

You really should look at VAERS. I can tell you have not. Explain to me how a "safe" vaccine has potentially caused almost as many adverse events in nine months as 30 YEARS of vaccine reporting?
How is it that more deaths related to Covid vaccines have been reported to VAERS in nine months than in 30 YEARS of VAERS reporting.
How can you call a vaccine safe that has disabled 20,000 people in nine months. This is about the same as 30 YEARS of reporting for all other vaccines.
Friends of mine have had friends and loved ones hospitalized and even killed by these "safe" vaccines. Forcing them on everyone to make you feel safe is incredibly selfish. Do better.

DALNanamiro

This is what happens when people lose their critical thinking skills. You need to get vaccinated to protect the unvaccinated. How would you feel if you gave Covid to your family and friends who are not vaccinated and one of them dies? We make people wear helmets on motorcycles and we make people wear seatbelts because their recklessness causes harm to themselves and burdens the rest of society (costs of police/fire/medical care if not insured/care that could be directed at others, etc.). As I noted, a vaccinated person can still get Covid from an unvaccinated person. They would probably live, but it is still a harm to them.
“Where is the evidence that unvaccinated people have "killed" vaccinated people with Covid-19?”
Would it make you feel better if they were only killing the unvaccinated? Would it make you happy if the unvaccinated are only killing themselves and leaving behind spouses, children, and friends? Putting that aside, yes, there is such evidence: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/health-departments/breakthrough-cases.html
It's not “proof” they don’t work. No one has said one can’t get Covid if vaccinated. What they have said is that it greatly reduces the chance of hospitalization or death and prevents the spread to others.
“Your comment, ‘Yes, the greater community does have a right to make people do the right thing when they fail to do it themselves,’ makes my skin crawl.”
Really? So you hate living in a society that makes you wear a seatbelt, wear a helmet, not shout fire in a crowded theater and the thousand other laws that prevent us from harming others? Hardly an ethical, reasonable, rational, or Christian view of laws. That is all a mandate is—a directive or law to prevent the irresponsible from harming others.
“You really should look at VAERS. I can tell you have not.”
Oh, I have. What you should really look at is a wide variety of credible sources and the science, which clearly you haven’t. Or, you have, and still don’t care. Again, no one can claim ignorance at this point.
See: https://apnews.com/article/fact-checking-afs:Content:9957832237
“How can you call a vaccine safe that has disabled 20,000 people in nine months.”
Where is your source for that assertion? The vaccines have certainly saved more lives, than any adverse effects they may have had otherwise. The vaccines are safe and effective. https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2021-07-09/us-covid-vaccine-rollout-saved-279-000-lives-study
This has nothing to do with my personal safety. It has to do with our responsibilities toward others, especially the least or weakest amongst us (immunocompromised, the elderly, children). You and the others who refuse to get vaccinated don’t seem to care about either yourselves or them.

"VAERS Limitations
VAERS reports alone generally cannot be used to determine if a vaccine caused or contributed to an adverse event or illness. Some reports may contain information that is incomplete, inaccurate, coincidental, or unverifiable. VAERS reports often lack contextual information, such as total vaccinations given or information on unvaccinated groups for comparison. Most reports to VAERS are voluntary, which means they may be subject to biases. Data from VAERS reports should always be interpreted with these limitations in mind...Hundreds of millions of people in the United States have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine. The majority of reports to VAERS after COVID-19 vaccination have been non-serious adverse events. CDC provides timely updates on selected adverse events reported after COVID-19 vaccination." https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/safety/vaers.html

NanamiroDAL

You said, "As I noted, a vaccinated person can still get Covid from an unvaccinated person." So, a vaccinated person can't be infected by a vaccinated person? Where are you hearing this? They have admitted vaccinated people can get AND pass on Covid to others, including the vaccinated. Why do you not acknowledge that?

People who have chosen to not be vaccinated have weighed the risks and made their decision. I am not responsible for their medical choices. I would guess they don't want me to take on that responsibility either. Neither should you or the government or businesses take it on. If a person wants to take up skydiving or race car driving, shouldn't they be allowed to take that risk without us wagging our fingers at them?

The CDC page you sighted did not, as far as I can tell, show that Covid breakthrough cases are caused by unvaccinated people. At least SOME must be from vaccinated people. How else would Israel and Iceland have such massive surges after vaccinating the vast majority of adults?

I still don't understand how wearing a seatbelt or helmet protects others...
VAERS is a resource run by the CDC and the FDA. Do you not think them credible? I get almost all my data from the CDC.
I already gave you a link to this site, but you must not have looked at it: https://medalerts.org/vaersdb/index.php
This sight allows you to view VAERS data for all vaccines, adverse events, narrowing down by the years, different demographics, etc. You can look at all the adverse events for, say, MMR vaccines and it will bring up all the reports. You can do that for Covid vaccines as well. Simply click on "disabled" and click "find." It will bring up all reports of people being disabled by all vaccines over the last 30 years. You will get approximately 40,000 cases. Then do the same search only highlight "Covid-19" under vaccines and click "find." It will find approximately 20,000 cases. Check it out. It is mind blowing. And besides short term effects (which is all we know about, it being less than a year) we have virtually no idea what long term health effects Americans may be dealing with in the future.

Immunocompromised and elderly can get vaccinated. Death or hospitalization in children is incredibly rare. And as we know, just because I'm vaccinated, it doesn't mean I can't catch Covid and pass it on to others.

You accuse me of not being a critical thinker (among other things). I challenge you to think critically about the CDC's statement which you posted. VAERS has been around for over 30 years and is used by the CDC and FDA as a tool to track adverse events. Their statement makes it sound like VAERS is a worthless joke. Why would it still exist after 30 years? Why bother if the information is useless, or even mostly useless? And the vast majority (I think around 80%) of reporting is done by medical staff. It is laborious to do and one can be charged with perjury for misreporting. So to imply that people are just willy-nilly reporting things is dishonest. And there can be bias both ways. Many adverse events don't get reported -especially with Covid because of the deep politicization of it.(My brother is a nurse and he has seen this firsthand)
If the number of adverse events were somewhat higher than other vaccines, like Influenza for example, it wouldn't be so disturbing. The problem is the sheer volume of adverse events for the Covid vaccines. It's not even in the same ballpark.
And isn't it strange that none of your reputable sources seems to report any of this? But if a healthy 20-year-old dies of Covid (incredibly rare) it will be front page news everywhere.

DALNanamiro

“They have admitted vaccinated people can get AND pass on Covid to others, including the vaccinated. Why do you not acknowledge that?”

Because it’s irrelevant. Unvaccinated people are 11 times more likely to die from Covid than the vaccinated. The issue isn’t who can get Covid and who cannot. The issue is that getting vaccinated helps prevent death, breakthrough variants, spreading it, and further burdens to the community.

“People who have chosen to not be vaccinated have weighed the risks and made their decision. I am not responsible for their medical choices.”

Since the risks of not being vaccinated FAR outweigh the risks of vaccination, I doubt they have. When their bad decisions harm the rest of us or burden the community, we have a responsibility to limit the harm. We are responsible for the medical choices of others when those choices could harm us in some way. That should be obvious.

“If a person wants to take up skydiving or race car driving, shouldn't they be allowed to take that risk without us wagging our fingers at them?”

When they do those things, they still have to follow laws and regulations. They can’t do it in way that could harm themselves or others. Further, none of those activities are contagious. Your analogy fails in every way. If they were to do any of those things outside those laws and regulations, yes, we would have every right to wag our fingers and more.

“I still don't understand how wearing a seatbelt or helmet protects others...”

If I concoct some conspiracy theory or spread disinformation that seatbelts and helmets can’t be trusted, and someone believes me, acts accordingly, and dies, I am partly responsible for their death, right? Plus, it harms the entire community. Their irresponsibility is a burden to our entire system (how many times do I have to point this out?) from first responders to health care.

And, actually, if one is in the rear seat and not wearing a belt, it can harm those in the front who are wearing a belt. Basically, that is what’s happening right now—we have people in the car being responsible and those who are not. Those who are wearing a belt, have every right to pull the car over, and tell the people in the back to buckle up or get out of the car. https://abcnews.go.com/Health/story?id=117053&page=1

Plus, if the irresponsible take up an ICU bed due to their failure to take a free vaccine that then prevents someone from getting the proper care needed (through no fault of their own), that is a harm to the community. Does that bother you? How is that not a harm to the greater community, which they have every right to be upset about? Why don’t you ask this mother why any of us should care about the medical choices of others? https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/569834-veteran-dies-of-treatable-illness-after-waiting-hours-for-icu-bed

“Immunocompromised and elderly can get vaccinated.” Yes, but they may not if they were to listen to people like you. Second, they can still get Covid and though they may survive, it could still possibly harm them and have long term consequences. Children may be at a lower risk, but close to 400 have died thus far. Does that bother you?

As to VAERS. Here, let’s note it again (any readers can compare the below to what you’re telling us and come to their own conclusions):

“While very important in monitoring vaccine safety, VAERS reports alone cannot be used to determine if a vaccine caused or contributed to an adverse event or illness. The reports may contain information that is incomplete, inaccurate, coincidental, or unverifiable. In large part, reports to VAERS are voluntary, which means they are subject to biases. This creates specific limitations on how the data can be used scientifically. Data from VAERS reports should always be interpreted with these limitations in mind.”

“COVID-19 vaccines remain safe and effective. They prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death. Additionally, even among the uncommon cases of COVID-19 among the fully or partially vaccinated vaccines make people more likely to have a milder and shorter illness compared to those who are unvaccinated. CDC continues to recommend everyone 12 and older get vaccinated against COVID-19.” -CDC Aug, 2021

NanamiroDAL

I don't believe one-size-fits-all forced vaccination is ethical. I am more likely, being Covid recovered, to suffer from the vaccine than Covid-19. There has been no serious talk about not forcing Covid-recovered Americans to take these injections. Why not?

You seem to not realize that 98.4% of the people who have contracted Covid (at least officially tested positive for it) in the last year and a half have survived it. Getting Covid isn't a death sentence. Therefore, not being vaccinated is not reckless for the vast majority of people, especially children.

You didn't respond to the numbers being reported to VAERS, you just re-quoted something from the CDC. You don't think it's strange that there are almost as many adverse events being reported to VAERS for Covid vaccines as 30 years of vaccine reporting? How is that not compelling to you? I don't understand how you can brush that aside so easily. Do you brush it aside because the CDC tells you to? Does it not bother you that children have been disabled by these vaccines that they don't even need?
Clearly we disagree. I hope and pray that the long term risk of these vaccines is minimal, but I fear, considering the FDA has never approved mRNA vaccines before because of safety and efficacy problems, that we will continue to see harm being done by them.
I am not anti-vaccine. I am anti-forced vaccination. I am against shaming, bribing and threatening people into getting medicial interventions that have no safety history past about 10 months and increasing efficacy concerns. Forcing people to get an experimental vaccine is unethical. I don't care what the CDC says. I'm using my own brain and conscience.
I think high risk people, especially older people, should seriously consider getting vaccinated and/or learning how to keep themselves healthy and improving their immune systems.
I think we need to FINALLY start treating people early who get Covid with drugs and interventions that have a good safety history, thereby lowering hospitalizations and deaths.
I hope the government never forces medical treatments on you against your will and conscience in the future like they are doing to some people today.

DALNanamiro

I stand by everything I've written, most of which, you failed to address. And I especially stand by the matter of their being no Biblical/theological justification for a religious exemption. Even as diverse as people like Baptist pastor Robert Jeffress and the Pope don't see a religious justification for an exemption.
I firmly believe the unvaccinated are a harm to themselves and others. So do most doctors/researchers/medical scientists.
I also believe those spreading lies, conspiracy theories, and misinformation regarding these vaccines, are partly responsible for any harm or deaths that result. I hope those doing so can sleep at night.
If the government ever forces me to take a vaccine that is not life saving or will prevent the deaths of others, I'll be the first to let you know and ask for your help. In the meantime, all they are doing is telling people they need to get vaccinated to prevent their own deaths and the deaths of others. I'm fine with that and I fine with it being mandated for some groups of people (medical people/first responders/military/government people/ etc., and even measures like having to show proof of vaccination to travel) and I think most reasonable people are too.

NanamiroDAL

I have responded to, I believe, everything you brought up. So I'm not sure what you are referring to.
You however never addressed the VAERS concern, except by copy/pasting someone else's thoughts, which didn't address the issue. I will assume this is because you don't have an answer.
You also never addressed Covid recovered people having to be vaccinated. You never admitted that the death rate from Covid is incredibly low for the majority of Americans, but instead talk like getting Covid is like getting Ebola. It is not.

I also am against misinformation being spread about Covid and the vaccines. I think full transparency of all that we know about the virus, treatments, masks and vaccines should be made available to all Americans, without bias towards any narrative. Sadly, the CDC and our leaders have not made this a priority.
Like I stated before, the benefit I and many other low risk or Covid recovered people would receive from the vaccine is negligible. The benefit the vaccine would be to those in contact with a Covid recovered person is zero. Covid recovered people are at least as protected as vaccinated people. However the government wants my husband's employer to force this vaccine on him (who already had Covid) even though it's of no benefit to him or those around him. This is abusive and unethical.
Getting Covid is not a death sentence. It would be even less lethal if our leaders encouraged early treatment, which they have continued to refuse to do in any way.
I understand the intense fear you are feeling considering most of the media and government messaging over the last 18 months has been perpetual fear mongering , with no end in sight. Maybe you even know someone who died from Covid. I have just had to investigate some of the discrepancies I've heard about over the last 18 months and what I have found has caused me to be more cautious and thoughtful about what I'm hearing.
I think most reasonable people don't want to force investigational vaccines on people who don't want them. I know I wouldn't want that for someone, even if it means I'm at greater risk.

DALNanamiro

“I have responded to, I believe, everything you brought up. So I'm not sure what you are referring to.”

You never responded to all the points I made regarding how the unvaccinated are a harm to themselves and others. For instance, the ICU capacity problem and it causing other people to die or the fact one is 11 times more likely to die from Covid if unvaccinated. Or, the seatbelt analogy with the people in the back not wearing belts, while those in front do. You don’t live on a deserted island. You live and are around other people. You live in community. The greater community has a right to protect itself from those who don’t seem to care about anyone else. Or the fact your skydiving and racing analogy was completely wrong. I could go on…but I do have a life.

“You however never addressed the VAERS concern, except by copy/pasting someone else's thoughts, which didn't address the issue.”

Those were not someone else’s thoughts. They were the cautions put out by VAERS and the CDC. And they completely undercut your points regarding the VAERS and how one should consider that data.

“You also never addressed Covid recovered people having to be vaccinated.”

People who have had Covid can still get Covid again and suffer greatly. The CDC recommends that people who have had Covid should still get vaccinated.

https://www.sacbee.com/news/coronavirus/article253708748.html

“You never admitted that the death rate from Covid is incredibly low for the majority of Americans, but instead talk like getting Covid is like getting Ebola. It is not.”

The close to 700,000 people who have died and the families they leave behind could care less about how low you think that number may be. 1 in 500 is too big a price to pay when there is a free vaccine available that saves lives. https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/interactive/2021/1-in-500-covid-deaths/

“Like I stated before, the benefit I and many other low risk or Covid recovered people would receive from the vaccine is negligible.”

If one thinks living as opposed to dying is a negligible benefit, okay. But, seriously, that is just not true. The benefit is far greater than any risks associated with the vaccines.

“Covid recovered people are at least as protected as vaccinated people.”

Not true: https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2021/s0806-vaccination-protection.html -so much for caring about not putting misinformation out there.

“However the government wants my husband's employer to force this vaccine on him (who already had Covid) even though it's of no benefit to him or those around him. This is abusive and unethical.”

It is a benefit to him and those around him. That is a fact. There is nothing abusive or unethical about it. In fact, you have it exactly backwards.

“Getting Covid is not a death sentence.”

It was for the almost 700,000 in the US and 4.5 million world-wide. And more will die thanks to those who refuse to get vaccinated.

“I understand the intense fear you are feeling considering most of the media and government messaging over the last 18 months has been perpetual fear mongering…”

I only fear the ignorant and inconsiderate—those refusing to get vaccinated who a harm to us all. The media and government had nothing to do with that. The people refusing to get vaccinated did.

We disagree.

NanamiroDAL

If people want to risk dying from Covid, that is their right. Vaccinated people also pass Covid onto others. You have not admitted that. As far as ICU capacity, that is overblown in most places, and hospitals in different states are now willing to reduce bed capacity because their staff won't get vaccinated. Is that ok?
Your seat belt analogy is incredibly weak in multiple ways. If I don't get vaccinated and get Covid, I have a less than 1% chance of dying or being hospitalized. If I don't wear a seatbelt, I have a much higher chance of being hospitalized or killed if I get in an accident. Not wearing a seatbelt is MUCH more risky than not getting this vaccine. MUCH.
The CDC quote does not even address the deluge of adverse events from Covid vaccines. They ignore the numbers. So do you apparently.
Try to find the US data on reinfection. You won't. Fauci himself counldn't answer a question as to why recovered people are being required to be vaccinated. Just watch the video: :https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2021/09/10/fauci_natural_immunity_vs_vaccine_for_covid-19_needs_to_be_discussed_seriously.html
He also mentions not knowing the durability of natural infection. The irony is we don't know the durability of vaccine immunity either...
Israel, which has kept much better track of cases says natural infection is showing superior:
https://www.timesofisrael.com/liveblog_entry/are-recovered-covid-patients-more-protected-than-the-vaccinated/
You should ventured out into the wide world outside of the CDC! They don't know everything. In fact their claims about natural infection could be considered misinformation.
You said in your previous post,"If the government ever forces me to take a vaccine that is not life saving or will prevent the deaths of others, I'll be the first to let you know." Well, they are. You haven't researched the benefits of natural infection like I have, otherwise you would know that the vaccine is at best of negligable benefit to me or those around me. THAT is a fact. Do your homework before demanding people take risks with a vaccine they don't need.
1.4% death rate. Much lower for healthy people. THAT is a fact.

DALNanamiro

“If people want to risk dying from Covid, that is their right.”

That’s not the point—the point is they risk the lives of others.

“Vaccinated people also pass Covid onto others. You have not admitted that.”

Yes, I have. Go back and read.

“As far as ICU capacity, that is overblown in most places…”

Not true. Take Idaho for instance: https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2021-09-03/idaho-hospitals-nearly-buckling-in-relentless-covid-surge

Do you agree that if a number of unvaccinated people take up an ICU bed, causing for instance a child hurt in an auto accident, to not receive the care they need and dies, that such is not a harm to others? Yes or no?

“Your seat belt analogy is incredibly weak in multiple ways. If I don't get vaccinated and get Covid, I have a less than 1% chance of dying or being hospitalized.”

That is not true. Covid has killed 1in 500 Americans. It is the leading cause of death in America.

“You should ventured out into the wide world outside of the CDC! They don't know everything.”

Since the VAERS info didn’t help you, now they don’t know everything. Got it.

“You haven't researched the benefits of natural infection like I have, otherwise you would know that the vaccine is at best of negligable benefit to me or those around me. THAT is a fact.”

False. That is misinformation. See my previous link. You don’t know what you are talking about and your misinformation is harming others.

The vaccines are safe and effective.

FIMIKINanamiro

VAERS is scary. I get that. But I don't think it's fair to compare historical figures for adverse reactions with ones for novel vaccines that have received unprecedented scrutiny and have been deployed in the midst of historic levels of political polarization to remedy a pandemic clouded in controversy. It would be much better if, instead of relying on volunteer reports, everyone's medical history (including vaccination records and medical conditions) could be automatically compiled into a central database so that researchers could search and sift for signals that would indicate a particular medicine may be causing unforeseen effects. That's just the system that Israel has. Thanks to them, we have good data on myocarditis and other risks that were rare enough to not be picked up in early trials. Researches there also verified that natural immunity to covid is just as effective - and possibly even better than - induced immunity, and in the same study found that getting vaccinated after having covid doubles your protection relative to someone who's had covid but hasn't been vaccinated. The vaccines aren't risk free, but thanks to Israeli data I think we can be confident that they're not nearly as bad as the naysayers claim. If there was any doubt as to the vaccine's safety, I think the Israeli government would be the first to suspend its use, given their fierce defense of the countries' citizenry from all numbers of threats.

As for covid risk, a 1 in 500 chance of dying isn't terrible, but if you were offered a vaccine that made you 90% less likely to die in a fire or from drowning, and a bit less likely that others you interreact with would as well, wouldn't you be interested? What would you think of someone who thumbed their nose at the idea? Deaths from such things are much rarer than covid, but how does that diminish their significance?

https://www.iii.org/fact-statistic/facts-statistics-mortality-risk

NanamiroFIMIKI

The problem with VAERS is the sheer volume of adverse events. I can't shake the idea that if the vaccines were as safe as other vaccines, they wouldn't have such an extreme number of adverse events. Yes, there is politicization and controversy about the vaccines. However, to begin with, those getting vaccinated early on were happy (by and large) to get the vaccine. If there was any bias in reporting, I would think it would lean away from assuming problems were caused by the vaccine. There is a refusal in society to admit or talk about adverse events from the vaccines-like they don't exist. I agree, that people are possibly looking out for adverse events at a higher rate than with normal vaccines. So it is hard to definitively say what is going on. But, I know two friends-of-friends who have died from the vaccines in less than eight months. They both seem to have a strong case (blood clot, heart failure). I know about four friends-of-friends who have died of Covid in 18 months. So, it raises my concerns about safety.
As far as decreasing one's risk of death by 90%, that sounds great until you look into your risk of death statistically. If my risk of death is 0.2%, if I even get Covid, that means my risk goes down to .02% if I get vaccinated. It's not nothing, but it sure isn't much. I've personally had Covid, so the benefit of the vaccine is significantly lower than that. Is it worth the risk?
As far as protecting others, clearly even our leaders don't trust the vaccines to not spread Covid since we are all in masks again. There is enough data now to show that the vaccinated are spreading it as well.

VAERS serves as that database you describe, even if it is imperfect. Yet we seem to be almost ignoring it. Myocarditis is all over VAERS even early on (My dad's coworker's healthy, teenage son got a Covid shot it February and ended up in the hospital having heart surgery shortly thereafter. It was not reported to VAERS) so the red flags were definitely there.
The study showing benefit to recovered Covid patients who get the vaccine have a very low increase in immunity as I recall. Like 1 or 2%. So you go from 95% immune to 97%. Again, is it really worth the risk? I think it's a personal decision.

FIMIKINanamiro

Ah wow - sorry to hear about those deaths experienced by friends of friends. In my network I don't know of anyone who's died after vaccination, but one young women we know has had strange breathing complications that have flummoxed doctors. Was it related? It's hard to know, but I do agree it would be arrogant to assume we know everything that's going on in the amazingly complex system that is our bodies. All we can do is compare what we've observed with the wild disease vs what we've observed with the vaccines.

As far as collecting that information, VAERS is certainly better than nothing, and I'm glad we have it. It is a data point to consider, but its dependence on voluntary reporting is its deepest flaw. In normal times most adverse events probably don't go reported - I've heard as low as 1% - but in times like this it's possible that many of the adverse events are completely unrelated. It's a big, giant, unsettling question mark. That's why as leery as I am of centralized healthcare systems, they're invaluable in times like this. An automated system collects all injuries (like what happened to your dad's coworker's son) for both unvaccinated and vaccinated individuals, so you can compare the incidents among the vaccinated with expected background rates, helping determine if there's actual causation instead of simple correlation. One interesting thing that emerged out of Israel's research was that the higher myocarditis events among the vaccinated only occur after the second dose, causing them to recommend just one dose for the demographic that was experiencing this. (Incidentally, I'm curious about how your dad's coworker's son got a vaccine in February, since at that time weren't the only folks eligible healthcare workers, the elderly, and sick?)

Vaccinated people infected with the delta variant do indeed transmit just as readily as unvaccinated, but they're still 40% less likely to GET infected. You can't transmit if you don't get infected. Simple cloth masks reduce transmission likelihood by roughly 50%, so yeah... just a little bit better than the vaccine, but not by much. The government isn't exactly being stellar with it's logic here or regarding the goodness of natural immunity. If I were in your shoes I wouldn't get the vaccine either. But... I don't know if I would go through great lengths to obtain an exemption and/or quit my job (if it was a good one) if it came down as a mandate.

NanamiroFIMIKI

That is what is so disturbing to me. My husband (and brothers) may be forced to get this sketchy vaccine-why? To dramatically lower their chance of death from Covid-19? No. To dramatically lower the chance of them spreading it to others? No. Then why? Because of fear, panic or perhaps to make their employers look good (or feel good). That's not right. That's not science. That's not about public health. It's bullyish. I am surprised so many think this is okay (or do they?). I guess I just think freedom and sovereignty over the body God gave me is important to maintain if at all possible. Fear is not a good reason to go against my better judgement.
I don't know what my husband will do. Go against his conscience or keep his job. That seems to be the choice. I am just so glad we will one day have a Good King who will have a Just government.

FIMIKINanamiro

Indeed, while for the average adult lacking any covid immunity I can't within the bounds of what we know construct any scenario where getting the vaccine is worse than eschewing it, that doesn't take away from the reality that all the stats and probabilities in the world don't erase the fear that comes with getting injected with something that even the most die-hard proponents admit has led to some deaths. People play the lottery all the time and that has terrible odds of success. Who can blame someone for being reluctant about taking that kind of chance with loosing their life, no matter the cold facts? Mandates are blunt-force measures that in my mind, should only be used as a last resort when all other incentives and options have failed. These covid vaccine mandates, often implemented in an uncaring, unthoughtful, divisive manner without any exemptions for the naturally immune are hardly the examples of compassion they espouse to be.

So give all that, how do I think we should respond as believers? As precious as our freedoms are, we know that they are not ultimate. Our lives our not our own, but exist to glorify God. If the world sees our refusal of the vaccine as an act of selfish paranoia, that would be as much of a tragedy as if they see our adoption of the vaccine as a sign of trust and confidence in man's technological prowess and mastery over nature. In all that we do, may we give weight and consideration to how our actions testify to the love and trust we have in Him, over and above the confidence we have in human judgement, including our own. After all, God is sovereign over both the virus and the vaccine, over every prince and every principality. He alone is in control.

Blessings on your family as you navigate these troubled times.

NanamiroFIMIKI

Thank you. To you as well.

DAL

There are no major religions/denominations supporting exemptions. Why? Well, because, in the Christian world at least, there is no Biblical or theological support for such. That is, partly, because there were no such things as vaccines when the Bible was written/put together. What the Bible does make fairly clear, however, is that we are to love our neighbor and put the needs of others before our own. If anything, the Christian narrative would support doing anything that leads to fewer people suffering or dying. The fact something like this even needs to be pointed out, shows how far we have fallen from just being literate, decent, Christians, with the ability to demonstrate some critical thinking skills. One is not "free" or have any "right" to harm others. Anyone using their faith as an excuse to do so (which is what one is doing if they refuse to get vaccinated) is about the furthest thing from a Christian witness one could imagine. Any police person, first responder, nurse, or doctor, Christian or not, who refuses to be vaccinated, should look for another line of work. The rest of us are tired of the selfish and inconsiderate ignorance of those who refuse to be vaccinated. To then cite some religious reason for not doing so...would only add insult to injury.

https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/09/health/covid-vaccine-religious-exemptions-khn/index.html

RCRE8109

I think many people are using a religious exemption as a smoke screen to hide their real reasons that have been discredited and proven false. Some people have swallowed the propaganda of the anti-vaxxers, anti-government, anti-science, talking heads, etc. Unfortunately, their minds are locked shut. At that same time, I do not deny that some people have real medical reasons to not get vaccinated as well.