As of midnight on Wednesday, anyone under the age of 18 who hasn’t been vaccinated against measles will not be allowed in public places. The ban, which will expire in 30 days, won’t apply to those who have documented medical reasons for not getting the vaccine. Parents have said they were given just 12 hours’ notice before the ban went in to effect, leaving very little time for planning their response.
Previously, officials had told unvaccinated students to stay home from school. The parents of 44 students at Green Meadow Waldorf School sued Rockland county earlier this month to challenge an order barring unvaccinated kids from attending school; a judge denied their temporary injunction request.
The outbreak, which has mostly impacted observant Jewish neighborhoods, reportedly began when a person visiting Israel became infected and returned with the disease.
It’s not very clear how it will be enforced, but a Rockland County representative says that when investigating where and when an infected person was exposed, people identified as being unvaccinated in public places will be referred to the district attorney.
Essentially, those who don’t wish to subject their children to the risks of vaccines are now going to be prisoners in their own homes. Violating the ban could lead to a fine of $500 and/or six months in jail, a steep price to pay for protecting your child’s health.
This is about as close to forced vaccination as you can get. Public places have been defined in this case as anywhere that more than 10 people are intended to congregate. These people will not be able to go to school, use public transport, go shopping, or eat in restaurants. It’s just a matter of time before the ban extends to adults, who wouldn’t be allowed to go to work. Of course, polling places are also public spaces, so those who don’t vaccinate would have a harder time voting as well.
If the vaccine is so effective, why is there so much fear among the vaccinated of being around people who haven’t gotten it and aren’t infected with measles? In fact, the nonvaccinated should be afraid to be around those who have responded to this madness by getting the shot as they can shed the virus for weeks or even months afterward.
Of course, that’s assuming measles is really something that warrants all this fear. Apart from immune-compromised people – who should be very careful about public places in any case – measles is not nearly as dangerous as it’s made out to be for most people in first-world countries. Yes, it’s highly contagious, but it was once just a rite of passage like getting chicken pox, as anyone who grew up in the 1960s will tell you; the pop culture of that era shows just how lightly it was taken.
Not only is this move by Rockland County concerning on its own, but it’s also scary to wonder what will happen next. Will people have to start carrying documentation around to prove they’ve been vaccinated? Will they be banned from public spaces if they don’t get other types of vaccines as well or take certain medications? Cutting people off from society because they don’t want to get risky vaccines sets an extremely dangerous precedent.
Sources for this article include: