Letter to the Editor

Response to vaccine protest

On Monday morning, I left home and drove down Hwy 177 where I thought I'd encountered an antifa protest (though nothing was on fire and some of the trash got picked up). I recognized over half the protesters as the same who've been yelling at our county health board for the last year, contradicting health care professionals, and spreading disinformation.

Some new folks joined them to allegedly protest P&G's COVID mitigation policy, but oddly they staged 5 miles from P&G. None of the protester signs demonstrated an understanding that employees can choose a free vaccination OR a free weekly test. That seems like a reasonable employment stipulation, especially during a pandemic.

I served this great country for nearly half my life. I support the right to protest. And though I find it terribly offensive and ignorant, protesters are free to disrespectfully fly our flag upside down just as others have burned it or kneeled during the anthem. They're free to question our government's policies, just as anti-war protesters and BLM. They're free to see public health policies — benefiting the common good — as individual persecution. I choose to use my freedom differently.

I imagine what it'd be like if those 30-40 protesters instead collectively volunteered at the SEMO Food Bank, donated platelets at the Red Cross, or collectively helped on a Habitat for Humanity build.

We don't have to agree, but I'm vaccinated because it's safe and contributes to the common good. I also support employers who offer workers a choice between a free vaccination and free testing.