Mandatory Covid-19 Vaccination Is Unethical and Unscientific
The post-covid-19 world is a surrealistic nightmare. Businesses have been shut down arbitrarily without any evidence that these shutdowns save any lives. Tens of millions of Americans have become unemployed due to these shutdowns. There are already demands for mandatory covid-19 vaccination even before a vaccine is available. “Make vaccines free, don’t allow religious or personal objections, and create disincentives for those who refuse vaccines shown to be safe and effective.” This is an empty statement, as any vaccine available will neither be 100 percent safe nor 100 percent effective. Based on the initial study of the Russian vaccine in a very limited number of patients, it is not even clear that the vaccine will be safer than the disease itself.
Justifications for Mandatory Vaccines
If a vaccine is 100 percent effective, there is no justification for mandatory vaccination. Anyone who wishes to be protected can voluntarily take the vaccine. It would not be possible for someone declining the vaccine to harm someone who voluntarily takes the vaccine. Any call for a mandatory vaccine is an explicit admission that the vaccine is not 100 percent effective.
If a vaccine were 0 percent effective, there would be no justification for anyone taking the vaccine. There must be some intermediate percentage of effectiveness that maximizes the utility of mandatory vaccination. As the vaccine becomes more effective, fewer people can possibly benefit from mandatory vaccination. As the vaccine becomes less effective, a lower percentage of people who could possibly benefit from mandatory vaccination will actually benefit.
Utility of mandatory vaccination requires that the vaccine be effective in some of those who would not voluntarily take it (conscripted helpers), that the vaccine be ineffective in some of those who would voluntarily take it (beneficiaries), and the stipulation that conscripted helpers interact with beneficiaries, that these interactions lead to extra infections despite other means of prevention, and that the extra infections result in serious illness or deaths. That is a lot of ifs. There is no way to know what this optimal effectiveness would be. There is no way to know how many coerced vaccinations are necessary to prevent one infection or to prevent one serious illness or death (number to treat). Given that the number to treat cannot possibly be known prior to vaccination, mandatory vaccination cannot be ethical even by utilitari
Article from Mises Wire