The storyline that has been on the political forefront the last 2 years is obviously Covid, masks and mandates… and how we have managed the situation as a community and as a government.
If I’m asking to represent 105k people in a district, I believe it’s important for people to know where I stand on these kinds of issues. I’m not going to hide from these issues. People deserve to know my thoughts and if given the opportunity how my opinions will shape policy.
First, let’s admit a few things that are obvious. We know more now than we did at the onset of this deal 2 years ago… so I understand that it’s an advantage to have this conversation now with 2 years of data and experiences behind us.
Secondly, this issue has become a political lightning rod that has unfortunately divided friends, families, companies and communities.
That’s regretful…. But it’s also revealing. For me, the core of this discussion centers around what someone believes the proper role of government is in the lives of individuals.
When we strip away the details and the arguments about masks and mandates THAT is the remaining question. What do we want the government’s role to be in this area?
Here’s where I stand…
I believe that people should be able to make decisions for themselves. I believe people should research the issues, talk to their doctors and make decisions that best mitigate their own risk.
If you choose to wear a mask I have no problems with that. Zero. Your decision. I do, however, have a problem with a mask mandate.
If you choose to get vaccinated I have no problems with that. That is YOUR decision. I am, however, adamantly opposed to a government mandate of this vaccine and I will be the strongest advocate against any mandate.
How did I come to this position? The answer really is that I arrive at this conclusion from a core conviction about the importance of limited government. We have set a dangerous precedent in the last 2 years about what government can and will do:
- Shutdowns of our economy
- Determination of Essential vs Non-Essential business
- Unpopular and impractical mandates
- Making people and companies choose between a vaccine and a job
I would just ask people to consider… Where does this end? It’s masks and mandates today but will it be next? Why are we comfortable giving the government this much space to impose divisive mandates?
Some would say “you are blowing it out of proportion. Nothing else would come in the future. Government is just doing what they deem best.”
I would say, in response, that a brief history lesson of the last 250 years would demonstrate that the government shouldn’t be trusted with unlimited authority to impose mandates. They have proven, over and over again, that when they pick winners and losers or impose policies like this vaccine mandate it never turns out well for a large percentage of our population.
So… wear a mask if you so choose. Get the vaccine if you so choose. But I will never support a mandate that makes that choice for you. It violates the very principle that forms my political worldview.