As one analyzes Rhode Island government, it becomes clearer and clearer that the basic problem is ultimately one of political philosophy. Granted, the political philosophy of Rhode Island conveniently serves those who have a personal interest in government power, but what I’m suggesting is that special deals and tyranny aren’t entirely imposed on an unwilling public. The corruption has filtered into the culture.
One particular strain of this corruption is visible in the controversy over the Department of Health’s unilateral bureaucratic mandate that all children going into the seventh grade (boys or girls; public or private school) must be vaccinated against a sexually transmitted disease. Consider this, from Linda Borg in the Providence Journal:
In the first of several public information forums, Dr. Nicole Alexander-Scott, director of the Department of Health, emphasized that no one wants children to miss school and said her office wants to work with parents who have “strong feelings” about the vaccine. She said the vaccine is mandatory because the state wants to reach as many students as possible, noting that Rhode Island already has the highest rate in the country for vaccinating youths against HPV.
Forcing people to put drugs into their children’s bodies just because the “state wants to reach” them is entirely inappropriate. This begins to approach Brave New World levels of inappropriateness, wherein there are no parents, really, and school is just the government’s way of molding people into the kind of citizens whom the government wants them to be.
Most importantly, note the complete inversion of the appropriate relation of families to the government: The government has no strong feelings about the vaccine — as evidenced by the fact that it didn’t bother to go through a rigorous process of persuading the people’s representatives — but for parents to push back on it, they must have strong feelings. The default is what the government wants.
Jane Dennison, a Barrington pediatrician (who no doubt offers vaccines as a profitable product to her patients), sides with the government, saying, “The health department is not trying to cram this down your throats,” but it clearly is. They’re coming at us with a fist full of it, and only those who push back avoid having it thrust upon them.
My family may or may not go forward with HPV vaccines, but I’ve already filled out the exemption forms. We have to push back on these infringements on our rights.