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Picture: 123RF/smcbuki
Picture: 123RF/smcbuki

Your editorial opinion refers (“Ramaphosa’s instinct in vaccine mandates correct, so drop the task teams and act”, November 30). The general principle in constitutional law is that the personal rights of an individual can never negatively infringe on those of others or society in general. Based on this and other principles concerning safety in the workplace and public spaces, most law experts thus far are confident that vaccine mandates will pass constitutional scrutiny.

The decision not to vaccinate is unfortunately not without consequences. It is a selfish one that has no regard for other citizens. If in future it is proved conclusively and widely accepted in the scientific/medical community that the vaccinated are at no greater risk than unvaccinated people of a) transmitting the virus; b) being a vessel for potential mutations; and c) becoming seriously ill or dying, then I would be inclined to agree that it should be left to personal choice.

However, what many fail to remember is that ability to transmit the virus after being vaccinated aside, the strain placed on the healthcare system that would result in harsh, economically damaging lockdowns would be caused primarily by unvaccinated people (even if a certain number of vaccinated people become ill enough to warrant treatment in hospital). Is this fair to our hospital staff, who have endured wave after wave of Covid and are now physically and emotionally exhausted?

Is this fair to every SA citizen who desperately needs this economy to be placed firmly back on the road to recovery without being perpetually hindered by further lockdowns and travel restrictions? I maintain antivaxers are selfish — all they care about is “me” and “my rights”. They are the embodiment of everything that is wrong with society today. Selfishness is a terrible thing and must be shunned.

State capture, for example, is often said to have been motivated by greed. But what is greed? Before greed comes selfishness. I need more money and I’m going to steal from my fellow citizens (most of whom are poor) to fund my lavish lifestyle, and I couldn’t give a damn what it means to others, because it’s all about me.

If the biblical exhortation to “love your neighbour as you love yourself” or to “do to others what you would have them do unto you” was heeded we would not be sitting with the vaccine mandate problem we have now.

Mark Khoury
Via BusinessLIVE

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