Many of you might feel like you are in the crosshairs, maybe of a transmissible virus, or of a government that will not let you ride the bus, or train, or enter any public venue unless you submit to a novel medical procedure.
Maybe you have lost your job because you would not accept mandatory vaccination.
Maybe you are looking forward to that happening soon.
Rumors and appearances are that I may face that edict soon.
I have composed a letter, very early Friday morning, before dawn, after lying awake and considering it for a couple of hours.
I have explained that I see this as a moral and spiritual test. If there is to be an overclass, and an underclass, I must stand naked with the underclass, as the Jews stood naked under the Third Reich. I made that clear before anyedict was announced. One of the doctors, with whom I have worked since 1995, commended me on my dedication to public health, but said that he trusted different factual sources, and that it was inappropriate and hurtful of me to bring the Jews and Nazis into it and tired and overused, too.
With that reply to the small group, I explained that when we took our four teenage kids bike touring and backpacking around the world in 2005 - 2006, we stopped at three memorials to the process now underway, the Anne frank House in Amsterdam, Dachau concentration camp in Germany (3 extra days on bikes for that visit) and Tuol Sleng Torture Museum in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. At each of these stops, the lesson was the same. This was not the work of monsters against ordinary people, but the work of ordinary people against other ordinary people. The situation turned so slowly to transform them out of a series of necessities, to become torturers and executioners of the innocent. Many in Cambodia eventually died the same way, falling under suspicion at some point.
The thought question for the "home school students" was how they might see something like this developing before there was no way out , but death.
Knowing that this kind of situation recurs in human history, where one group marks another group as a scapegoat, during times of war and famine, takes their wealth and disposes of them somehow, how would one see it developing and make a leap into the unknown to escape the trap?
In 1932 Germany was under severe economic and social stress, the Weimar Republic was on the ropes, and the opposition to it was fractured, largely between communists and Nazis, but no path was yet set or decided, and nobody wanted war again. I likened our current situation to 1932 Germany, just before the steps were taken that led to the chaos and horror which followed. Looking back at history it is hard to see what might have alerted a German Jew between 1932 and 1936 that it was time to risk everything and leave.
And go where? The whole world was going through depression. How can people in a depression just leave their only support?
This is a really hard question. What I came up with was that a person had to leave at the first sign of depersonalization and scapegoating of a group being codified into law. How would a college educated Chinese person flee China as years of stagnation and frustration led towards the Cultural Revolution?
Could any Jew or non-Roman Catholic have seen the Spanish Inquisition coming?
One would have to be ever vigilant for signs of scapegoating, mainly from the government, as the economy spiraled down, but before it collapsed completely.
One would need to have certainty in the face of these signs and act decisively before the society coalesced to carry out the scapegoating. One might be able to influence against it by making a public stand. If one would be unsuccessful, one would be forced to leave at the point that the decision was set. One might leave before the purges and culls were carried out. This is a hypothetical which only involves struggle and uncertainty.
Now, in the US, the government is blaming unvaccinated people for causing mutations of the coronavirus, which are infecting nice, law abiding, compliant, innocent vaccinated citizens.
The fact is that the vaccines themselves select for viral mutation to resist them.
This was always certain, because they are "non-sterilizing".
A vaccinated person can carry the virus in their nose, a somewhat hostile environment, and if the virus mutates to avoid the antibodies, that mutation will proliferate and spread. It is inevitable, and on the fairly short timeline that we are already seeing.
In July, the Pfizer vaccine was 42% effective in reducing relative risk of catching COVID in the US, down from 95% touted in January.
It is the US government blaming the unvaccinated, mandating vaccination for government employees, including the armed forces, which were reluctant in the spring, especially the army. Other governments already have vaccine passports, without which one is essentially confined to home, not allowed in public buildings or public transport, and can't dine outdoors in Paris. The important point in my mind is that government policy is picking a large scapegoat class. Many are calling out for blood, or at least firing the scapegoats, and I see nice people, who I have known for years, saying and writing this. Jenny tells me of people writing this on Facebook, who I know to be loving and caring people. One of the doctors who is most enraged that anybody unvaccinated is still working at People's Community Clinic is somebody I have always been friends with, and who smiled and waved Friday morning as we entered work. We always chat when there is not plate glass between us. Maybe she has heard about me over the weekend. Maybe I will know the next time our eyes meet.
My calling, my spiritual work in this life is to help my patients live their lives with less suffering, and I have to do that in any way that I can. Thousands of people count upon me to see what is causing them pain and troubles, and to find ways through medical investigation, treatment, and sometimes prayer to help them live through and past it. At this point in my life, and in history, People's Community Clinic, where I am already working with so many people, is the best place I can see to do my spiritual work. In fact, I see no other. Nothing else has been shown to me by our loving universe.
My spiritual "dual mandate" is to keep serving the people who count on my insightful medical care, and to refuse mandatory vaccination upon the principle of avoiding the dehumanizing steps which lead into totalitarianism.
I'm again including the succinct video which summarizes the work of Hannah Arendt and Carl Jung, who intimately lived through this process.