I saw the following quote by Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau on social media recently and found it extremely disturbing. Below, I will explain why.
First of all, Trudeau claims that people who oppose forcing everyone to get the Covid vaccine “don’t believe in science or progress.” This makes no sense. A person’s stance on vaccine mandates has nothing to do with science; it has to do with morality. Even if the science showed Covid vaccines to be 100% effective and 100% risk-free (which it does not), it wouldn’t be okay to require people to get them, because requiring people to get medical procedures is always wrong. Opposing vaccine mandates does not indicate that a person does not believe in science; it indicates that the person (unlike Trudeau, apparently) believes in moral right and wrong. As for progress, Trudeau might be correct in claiming that vaccine mandate opponents don’t believe in progress. But given the way the world has been trending over the past two years, opposing progress is not a bad thing, but a good thing! The world is moving towards totalitarianism, and further progress down this path should be opposed by all morally decent people.
Second, Trudeau claims that people who oppose forcing everyone to get the Covid vaccine are “very often misogynistic and racist.” This claim is completely unsupported by logic or evidence. The question of whether or not people should be required to get the Covid vaccine has nothing to do with gender or race; therefore people who oppose vaccine mandates are no more likely to be misogynistic or racist than people who support vaccine mandates.
Third, contrary to Trudeau’s claims, neither he nor the Canadian people as a whole gets to make a choice about whether or not to “tolerate these people.” People have a fundamental right to make their own medical decisions; therefore everyone has a moral obligation to tolerate people who make different medical decisions than they do. If by “these people,” Trudeau means not only people who opt against the vaccine, but people who philosophically oppose vaccine mandates, then his statement is even more objectionable. Opposing vaccine mandates is the morally correct stance; therefore everyone is obligated not only to tolerate people with this stance, but to support them and agree with them! For someone with a morally wrong point of view to ask whether or not he should “tolerate” people with the morally right point of view is preposterous.
The real question is whether people should tolerate those who, like Trudeau, believe that it is okay to force people to undergo medical procedures. I suggest that the answer should be no.