This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, October 6, 2021:
Jonathan Isaac, starting forward for the Orlando Magic professional basketball team, appeared Monday night on “Fox News at Night,” hosted by Shannon Bream. He has recently gotten attention over his decisions not to wear a BLM shirt or kneel during the National Anthem.
But his decision not to get vaccinated has caused the mainstream media to focus on him once again.
When Bream asked him about his stance, his response was reasonable, well-balanced, and winsome:
I believe what I'm saying is rational…. We live in the land of the free and the home of the brave and [I] have the opportunity and the platform to say what it is that [I] feel is right.
I'm taking that right to do so, not just for me, but for all of those people who feel like they don't have a voice.
His stance is reasonable: Individuals have the right to make their own decisions about what goes into their bodies. And government is threatening that right through mandates, while the media is hounding the unvaccinated by suggesting they are selfish — even (in some cases) “terrorists.” Former NBA star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar promoted the lie that the unvaccinated are threatening the vaccinated. He suggests that Isaac and others who are refusing to get the jab are putting his teammates and their opponents at a greater risk of infection.
The fact that this is illogical — that those vaccinated allegedly have greater protection from the virus than do those unvaccinated — isn't considered. MSN calls it a “debate” where there isn't one, or shouldn't be. In the land of the free, a citizen is free to determine whether or not the vaccine makes sense to him or her personally, based upon the best information available. Government shouldn't be involved in the decision-making process at all, even in providing the information needed. That should all be provided by the free market.
But government has overstepped its bounds and is not only providing continuous and often contradictory advice, but is now, through the Oval Office, issuing executive orders and mandates that people must be vaccinated — that government knows best, and personal freedom of choice is expendable in face of the “crisis.”
Isaac told Bream:
I believe that we're entering a period of time where the government is setting a precedent that in light of any emergency, your personal autonomy, your religious freedom, and your freedom as a whole becomes negotiable.
I would just say [to those deciding not to be vaccinated and being pressured and hounded and abused as a result], stay encouraged. It may feel like hopelessness but there are people who are out there [who] are trying their best to hold the line.
And I believe that we're going to see a great revival through this as well, as people begin to [open] their eyes.
One of those “holding the line” is Julius Ruechel, a Canadian libertarian writer who encourages his readers to stand firm in the face of such government threats. In July he wrote “The Emperor Has No Clothes: Finding the Courage to Break the Spell,” followed by his more recent “A Glimmer of Hope: Crisis Brewing in the Ranks as More Police Officers Stand up to say “NO” – Tyranny Collapses if Enough People Refuse to Participate.”
He makes the case in his first article that people are cowed into silence through the threat of peer pressure and the risk of being ridiculed for taking a stance that goes against the government position. He wrote:
The Ash Conformity Experiments of the 1950s showed how powerful peer pressure is. No one wants to stand up against the herd. Standing alone is psychologically painful.
That is why, in Hans Christian Andersen's folktale, it was the innocent voice of a little boy and not the self-righteous adult townsfolk who broke the spell about the emperor's new clothes.
In his more recent article, Ruechel expresses his hope that recent pushback by police officers in Canada and healthcare workers in the United States is perhaps the beginning of the end for these government mandates: “Momentum is building. Courage begets courage. Something big is brewing.”
Orlando Magic basketball player Jonathan Isaac may not know Julius Ruechel. But they are kindred spirits in the freedom fight against government tyranny. Both recognize the need for citizens not only to become informed and then exercise their personal responsibility, but to also take a stand when challenged by the powers-that-be who would encroach on and abrogate and override those rights.