Freedom of Choice Is Not Selfish.
Don't ever let anyone tell you that it's selfish or greedy to value freedom and rights over safety.
The desire for freedom and safety is universal. Every parent wants their child to be safe from harm. Everyone wants to feel safe while driving their car down the highway. Similarly, everyone wants to have freedom. Everyone wants the freedom to do what they want to do, go where they want to go, vote for who they choose, say what they want to say, and work where they want to work.
Here's the problem: There is no absolute safety or freedom. You can never fully protect your child from every danger. You can never be guaranteed safety while driving (even if you drove a tank to work!). There is an element of risk in everything we do. Always has been and always will be. We literally risk our lives every day by simply checking our mailbox or eating lunch at our favorite restaurant.
Similarly, freedom is never absolute. If you exercise your freedom to not go to work anymore, you start losing the freedom that a paycheck provides. You should have the freedom to live your life the way you want to, but because there will always be risks involved, you shouldn't be surprised when some of your choices have undesired consequences. You have the freedom to eat ice cream for every meal, but don't be surprised when you end up obese and diabetic.
Currently, we're seeing this tension between safety and freedom play out on social media and normal media as citizens weary of the never-ending Covid narrative navigate whether or not they should get the vaccine. Some people were first in line for the vaccine, while others are skeptical of whether it's actually necessary. Some people trust the vaccine producers and regulators with religious ferocity while others are leery of the pharmaceutical industry's track record. Some people see the vaccine as the most important action step to protect themselves and their loved ones against this one specific virus, while others believe that their body has an immune system that doesn't need a pharmaceutical procedure to help it.
Sometimes we see people expressing sentiments like this:
"Stop being selfish, just get the shot!"
Statements like this one scream of ignorance and emotions not lead by science and/or common sense. Consider these points:
It's a fact that some people are experiencing life-altering side effects from the vaccine. It is not selfish to want to protect yourself and your loved ones from dangerous side effects.
Many of the people hospitalized with COVID at this very moment (Sept 18, 2021) have had one or both of their COVID vaccinations. The vaccine's effectiveness at preventing infection or the spread of the virus is questionable. It's not selfish to refuse something that doesn't live up to the claims made about it.
After almost 2 years, almost everyone has been in contact with the Coronavirus by now. You likely already have natural immunity, which is and always will be better than artificial immunity.
The vaccine is just one of the measures implemented across the country in the name of "safety". Considering that absolute safety is an unachievable goal, when do the measures end? You were told to wear a mask "until it's safe". Well, the question is: Who decides when it's safe? It will never be safe. You'll notice that people are still wearing masks 18 months later.
This is where the importance of preserving and pursuing freedom becomes paramount. To sacrifice tangible rights and freedoms for intangible safety is incredibly dangerous. It's dangerous because absolute safety is unattainable. You can start giving up small, almost trivial, freedoms and rights for the sake of safety, but where does it stop and how do you stop the snowball effect?
Ultimately, the "safety" that we are trying to achieve is an illusion, more of an emotion than something that is a real fact. To incrementally give up freedoms for a feeling of safety is terrifying and has no chance of ending well.