Belief vs. Reality and Survival vs. Idealism

 

We all want to believe that if we were alive when it happened, things would have been different. We would have sheltered the Jews. We would have helped the heretics. No witches (old women) would have burned. We would have stood up for them, demanded justice, inserted ourselves into the situation, and made it better. We would have insisted upon our God-given rights.

We would have used the rule of law to protect ourselves.

We would have been different.

We would be the ones.

We all think that if the time came and the country were split, we’d the ones fighting for freedom. We’d fight for justice. We’d fight for all that is good and right. Because we are good people. Because we have strong feelings about this.

…and then when it creeps up on you, the only thing that crosses the mind is panic.

Utter and sheer panic.

Where will my next paycheck come from? What about my family? What about our health insurance?

What about my home?

How will we survive? How do we accept the consequences for standing up for the things that I so strongly believe in? How do I tell my child that they will suffer because of me? How is that conscionable?

There are more questions than answers.

And even though we talk like we would somehow be different than those wicked people in days of yore, many of us would much rather get along to go along.

I can file a religious exemption. Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me. I can do that and preserve my family.

But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

While I may have reservations about the good of vaccines coming from lines of cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, it isn’t exactly true that I have a problem with it. I have had many vaccines; some of those have been tested on those same fetal cells. I have had two Covid vaccines which were tested on fetal cells. I didn’t know this at the time (bad Catholic, me). But all the same, I didn’t find Jesus right now.

But it would be easier.

Because my doctors have all been coerced by the state to not write any exemptions, no matter how righteous, because they will lose their livelihood.

And at the end of the day, their jobs mean more than mine. At the end of the day, ultimately, truly, these caring doctors who have cared for me for years, blink and apologize. They hope I’ll figure it out. They really don’t want me to think that it isn’t because they don’t care…but their hands are tied.

At the end of the day, my life means less to them than their license. My life means less than the lives they might otherwise touch. I’m an outlier. I’m a genetic anomaly with unpredictable hypersensitivities that doctors cannot quite explain.

And the end of the day, if I have to get a vaccine to keep my job, that’s a risk they’re willing to take.

I want to think that I am better than money and that I stand for principles. I want to think that when human rights are challenged, I will stand up.

But even when it is my own life and my own rights, I am finding it hard to muster the courage.

Published in General
This post was promoted to the Main Feed by a Ricochet Editor at the recommendation of Ricochet members. Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

There are 57 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. HankRhody Freelance Philosopher Contributor
    HankRhody Freelance Philosopher
    @HankRhody

    TheRightNurse:

    I can file a religious exemption.  Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me.  I can do that and preserve my family.

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.  

    You ever notice how religious exemptions make it so the government gets to decide what does and doesn’t constitute right belief? 

    • #1
  2. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    In my experience most people have an over inflated view of how brave they are, or what they would do when crisis  or even pressure happens.  We are a fearful people, living fearful lives, in some form of relative quiet drudgery.  In the end it is all crab bucket with us trying not to get stepped on by things that can hurt us.

    • #2
  3. philo Member
    philo
    @philo

    TheRightNurse: I can file a religious exemption.  Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole…

    Somewhere north of 4,000 such exemptions were rubberstamped by my employer. I can vouch for at least one of them because we have had related discussions for years before COVID hit. (He turned in a five page letter explaining the details of his objections. Quite impressive.)  And it would not surprise me if a majority of the applications were legitimate at some level or another. But, after more than 30 years at the same facility, I never would have guessed such a high percentage of those around me…

    By the way, those 4,000+ are counted in the tally the company reports when they tell their overlords that they are now 96% compliant with the “mandate”.

    I do occasionally ponder those who took the loophole. How many did some honest soul searching before checking that box and how many just mindlessly to the path offered? In the end, I don’t hold anything against any of them for evading the iron heel of a tyrannical president and his loyal forces this once. But I also see very clearly that the second order effect of this is a loss in respect for, and loyalty towards, the employers who were so energetic in their efforts kiss up to the king. The effects of that will linger for decades.

    • #3
  4. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    This process is how you cleanse the medical establishment of thoughtful, moral people. Edited to add: “who are most likely to resist authority.”

    • #4
  5. Sandy Member
    Sandy
    @Sandy

    HankRhody Freelance Philosopher (View Comment):

    TheRightNurse:

    I can file a religious exemption. Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me. I can do that and preserve my family.

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    You ever notice how religious exemptions make it so the government gets to decide what does and doesn’t constitute right belief?

    My understanding is that in applying for the religious exemption one is not subject to question as to one’s belief and there is nothing specific about the basis of one’s request for the exemption on the forms that I’ve seen.  Are people being denied exemptions on the basis of some question as to their beliefs? 

    There has been a campaign for years to get rid of both religious and medical exemptions to school vaccine requirements, but 44 states allow them and 15 allow “philosophical” objections.  https://www.ncsl.org/research/health/school-immunization-exemption-state-laws.aspx

    • #5
  6. Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw Member
    Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw
    @MattBalzer

    Sandy (View Comment):

    HankRhody Freelance Philosopher (View Comment):

    TheRightNurse:

    I can file a religious exemption. Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me. I can do that and preserve my family.

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    You ever notice how religious exemptions make it so the government gets to decide what does and doesn’t constitute right belief?

    My understanding is that in applying for the religious exemption one is not subject to question as to one’s belief and there is nothing specific about the basis of one’s request for the exemption on the forms that I’ve seen. Are people being denied exemptions on the basis of some question as to their beliefs?

    There has been a campaign for years to get rid of both religious and medical exemptions to school vaccine requirements, but 44 states allow them and 15 allow “philosophical” objections. https://www.ncsl.org/research/health/school-immunization-exemption-state-laws.aspx

    One could say that in this case the right belief is in the efficacy of the vaccine, and by applying for an exemption you’re stating you believe the wrong things.

    • #6
  7. Sandy Member
    Sandy
    @Sandy

    Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw (View Comment):

    Sandy (View Comment):

    HankRhody Freelance Philosopher (View Comment):

    TheRightNurse:

    I can file a religious exemption. Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me. I can do that and preserve my family.

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    You ever notice how religious exemptions make it so the government gets to decide what does and doesn’t constitute right belief?

    My understanding is that in applying for the religious exemption one is not subject to question as to one’s belief and there is nothing specific about the basis of one’s request for the exemption on the forms that I’ve seen. Are people being denied exemptions on the basis of some question as to their beliefs?

    There has been a campaign for years to get rid of both religious and medical exemptions to school vaccine requirements, but 44 states allow them and 15 allow “philosophical” objections. https://www.ncsl.org/research/health/school-immunization-exemption-state-laws.aspx

    One could say that in this case the right belief is in the efficacy of the vaccine, and by applying for an exemption you’re stating you believe the wrong things.

    No doubt.  No doubt at all.  Just wondering how these exemptions are being processed.  

    • #7
  8. Doug Watt Moderator
    Doug Watt
    @DougWatt

    The proverbial “slippery slope” lives loudly with the mandate crowd. Religious exemption is seen as a danger by the pro-abortion and pro-euthanasia advocates. If they can eliminate religious exemption for Covid vaccinations they will see that as a pretext to force doctors, nurses, and more importantly force Catholic hospitals to provide abortions, transgender surgery, as well as euthanasia services.

    • #8
  9. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    TheRightNurse:

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.  

    While I may have reservations about the good of vaccines coming from lines of cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, it isn’t exactly true that I have a problem with it.  I have had many vaccines; some of those have been tested on those same fetal cells.  I have had two Covid vaccines which were tested on fetal cells.  I didn’t know this at the time (bad Catholic, me).  But all the same, I didn’t find Jesus right now.

    …but it would be easier.

    That isn’t directly true for me either. I’m DoD and fall under Biden’s executive order for civilian employees. After speaking with my pastor, I filed my religious exemption based on a burden of conscience. As the provider of the family, I was being forced to take something that could potentially damage my health to where I couldn’t work. It also helped that one of the questions mentioned the vaccine mandate and not just the vaccine. I submitted my package in November, which included a letter from my pastor.

    I can’t tell you about results. An announcement was made in December that the deciding authority had been delegated to the local directorate. In our director’s end of year message, he said that decisions would be being made at the first of the year. Still nothing. I saw last week that a judge was holding up the executive order. Ever since the November 22, 2021 deadline I’ve had to test weekly. At least they are providing the tests. I wonder if it will eventually be quietly dropped.

    My wife tested positive for Kung Flu last Friday. I had to isolate for five days since I wasn’t vaccinated. She’s a bit better and I still haven’t come down with it.

    If you want to see what I submitted, feel free to PM me.

     

    • #9
  10. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):

    TheRightNurse:

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    While I may have reservations about the good of vaccines coming from lines of cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, it isn’t exactly true that I have a problem with it. I have had many vaccines; some of those have been tested on those same fetal cells. I have had two Covid vaccines which were tested on fetal cells. I didn’t know this at the time (bad Catholic, me). But all the same, I didn’t find Jesus right now.

    …but it would be easier.

    That isn’t directly true for me either. I’m DoD and fall under Biden’s executive order for civilian employees. After speaking with my pastor, I filed my religious exemption based on a burden of conscience. As the provider of the family, I was being forced to take something that could potentially damage my health to where I couldn’t work. It also helped that one of the questions mentioned the vaccine mandate and not just the vaccine. I submitted my package in November, which included a letter from my pastor.

    I can’t tell you about results. An announcement was made in December that the deciding authority had been delegated to the local directorate. In our director’s end of year message, he said that decisions would be being made at the first of the year. Still nothing. I saw last week that a judge was holding up the executive order. Ever since the November 22, 2021 deadline I’ve had to test weekly. At least they are providing the tests. I wonder if it will eventually be quietly dropped.

    My wife tested positive for Kung Flu last Friday. I had to isolate for five days since I wasn’t vaccinated. She’s a bit better and I still haven’t come down with it.

    If you want to see what I submitted, feel free to PM me.

     

    Do you know of any people who were vaccinated who filed for an exemption from the mandate? 

    • #10
  11. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):

    TheRightNurse:

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    While I may have reservations about the good of vaccines coming from lines of cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, it isn’t exactly true that I have a problem with it. I have had many vaccines; some of those have been tested on those same fetal cells. I have had two Covid vaccines which were tested on fetal cells. I didn’t know this at the time (bad Catholic, me). But all the same, I didn’t find Jesus right now.

    …but it would be easier.

    That isn’t directly true for me either. I’m DoD and fall under Biden’s executive order for civilian employees. After speaking with my pastor, I filed my religious exemption based on a burden of conscience. As the provider of the family, I was being forced to take something that could potentially damage my health to where I couldn’t work. It also helped that one of the questions mentioned the vaccine mandate and not just the vaccine. I submitted my package in November, which included a letter from my pastor.

    I can’t tell you about results. An announcement was made in December that the deciding authority had been delegated to the local directorate. In our director’s end of year message, he said that decisions would be being made at the first of the year. Still nothing. I saw last week that a judge was holding up the executive order. Ever since the November 22, 2021 deadline I’ve had to test weekly. At least they are providing the tests. I wonder if it will eventually be quietly dropped.

    My wife tested positive for Kung Flu last Friday. I had to isolate for five days since I wasn’t vaccinated. She’s a bit better and I still haven’t come down with it.

    If you want to see what I submitted, feel free to PM me.

     

    Do you know of any people who were vaccinated who filed for an exemption from the mandate?

    I don’t. There is one other guy in our branch who put in for an exemption. He’s in another building and I haven’t talked to him. 

    I liked the pictures of Europeans burning their vaccine cards to protest the mandates over there. 

    • #11
  12. Flicker Coolidge
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):

    I liked the pictures of Europeans burning their vaccine cards to protest the mandates over there. 

    Is that like burning your draft card?

    • #12
  13. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):

    I liked the pictures of Europeans burning their vaccine cards to protest the mandates over there.

    Is that like burning your draft card?

    Interesting analogy to those who sought exemption from the military draft on religious grounds.

    • #13
  14. Skyler Coolidge
    Skyler
    @Skyler

    TheRightNurse:

    …and then when it creeps up on you, the only thing that crosses the mind is panic.

    Utter and sheer panic.

    Speak for yourself.

    • #14
  15. Skyler Coolidge
    Skyler
    @Skyler

    TheRightNurse:

    But even when it is my own life and my own rights, I am finding it hard to muster the courage.

    It’s a decision.  Make the right one.  And prepare as best you can.

    • #15
  16. Skyler Coolidge
    Skyler
    @Skyler

    philo (View Comment):
    Somewhere north of 4,000 such exemptions were rubberstamped by my employer

    My employer did the same as a government contractor.  They didn’t mind scaring the crap out of all the unvaxxed until then, though.

    I’ve no objections to vaccinations so it didn’t apply to me.  But as a new employee it could have been quite scary to be laid off a few months after arriving and potentially having to be responsible for moving costs.

    • #16
  17. Flicker Coolidge
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):

    I liked the pictures of Europeans burning their vaccine cards to protest the mandates over there.

    Is that like burning your draft card?

    Interesting analogy to those who sought exemption from the military draft on religious grounds.

    Yes, good point.

    • #17
  18. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):
    I liked the pictures of Europeans burning their vaccine cards to protest the mandates over there. 

    That idea had never occurred to me.

    • #18
  19. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):
    I liked the pictures of Europeans burning their vaccine cards to protest the mandates over there.

    That idea had never occurred to me.

    Is this the one?

     

    • #19
  20. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    TheRightNurse:

    I can file a religious exemption. Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me. I can do that and preserve my family.

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    As the resident Christian philosopher, lay theologian, and non-Catholic but still probably Ricochet’s best scholar of both Augustine and Aquinas, I endorse an indirectly true religious objection as plenty true enough.

    All truth is God’s truth. All reality is God’s reality. If I learn something from science, it is part of my Christian worldview. If I know something about my personal medical issues with asthma or hemorrhoids, it is my religious responsibility based on letters to the Corinthians to deal with the situation to the best of my ability.

    • #20
  21. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    Would it help if I cited your Pope–the good one, the Benedict one?  He says the Categorical Imperative from Kant is the Golden Rule, which is as good as saying “The Categorical Imperative is correct!”

    And the Cat. Impv. tells you to not risk your own health in this way, thus rendering yourself a mere means to the end of some politician’s screwy idea of how to manage society.

    So there you go: Your good Pope tells you not to take the vaccine, via two simple steps of logic.

    • #21
  22. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):
    I liked the pictures of Europeans burning their vaccine cards to protest the mandates over there.

    That idea had never occurred to me.

    Is this the one?

     

    It could be. It was sometime last summer.

    • #22
  23. TheRightNurse Member
    TheRightNurse
    @TheRightNurse

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Would it help if I cited your Pope–the good one, the Benedict one? He says the Categorical Imperative from Kant is the Golden Rule, which is as good as saying “The Categorical Imperative is correct!”

    And the Cat. Impv. tells you to not risk your own health in this way, thus rendering yourself a mere means to the end of some politician’s screwy idea of how to manage society.

    So there you go: Your good Pope tells you not to take the vaccine, via two simple steps of logic.

    Well, yes.  I obviously shouldn’t take it.

    But do I take the easy way out and file religious exemption?  Or do I try to do the right thing?

    • #23
  24. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    TheRightNurse (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Would it help if I cited your Pope–the good one, the Benedict one? He says the Categorical Imperative from Kant is the Golden Rule, which is as good as saying “The Categorical Imperative is correct!”

    And the Cat. Impv. tells you to not risk your own health in this way, thus rendering yourself a mere means to the end of some politician’s screwy idea of how to manage society.

    So there you go: Your good Pope tells you not to take the vaccine, via two simple steps of logic.

    Well, yes. I obviously shouldn’t take it.

    But do I take the easy way out and file religious exemption? Or do I try to do the right thing?

    I don’t understand why a religious exemption isn’t the right thing.

    • #24
  25. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    TheRightNurse:

    I can file a religious exemption. Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me. I can do that and preserve my family.

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    While I may have reservations about the good of vaccines coming from lines of cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, it isn’t exactly true that I have a problem with it. I have had many vaccines; some of those have been tested on those same fetal cells. I have had two Covid vaccines which were tested on fetal cells. I didn’t know this at the time (bad Catholic, me). But all the same, I didn’t find Jesus right now.

    You don’t have a religious objection to all vaccines, or to all Covid vaccines; but you have a religious objection to getting your second shot.  Is that not good enough?

    • #25
  26. TheRightNurse Member
    TheRightNurse
    @TheRightNurse

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    TheRightNurse:

    I can file a religious exemption. Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me. I can do that and preserve my family.

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    While I may have reservations about the good of vaccines coming from lines of cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, it isn’t exactly true that I have a problem with it. I have had many vaccines; some of those have been tested on those same fetal cells. I have had two Covid vaccines which were tested on fetal cells. I didn’t know this at the time (bad Catholic, me). But all the same, I didn’t find Jesus right now.

    You don’t have a religious objection to all vaccines, or to all Covid vaccines; but you have a religious objection to getting your second shot. Is that not good enough?

    Third shot.

    And no, it isn’t when doctors are put under duress to deny writing valid medical exemptions for genuinely disabled people.

    It’s not exactly right when I have pretty causative evidence and evidence of things that are happening to others.  It’s fine for me to take it, for me maybe,  but it is wrong to leave others in no mans land.  And to act like this is okay because I found a loophole.

    • #26
  27. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    TheRightNurse (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    TheRightNurse:

    I can file a religious exemption. Whether or not it is true, it’s a loophole that has been made for me. I can do that and preserve my family.

    But it isn’t real and it isn’t directly true.

    While I may have reservations about the good of vaccines coming from lines of cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, it isn’t exactly true that I have a problem with it. I have had many vaccines; some of those have been tested on those same fetal cells. I have had two Covid vaccines which were tested on fetal cells. I didn’t know this at the time (bad Catholic, me). But all the same, I didn’t find Jesus right now.

    You don’t have a religious objection to all vaccines, or to all Covid vaccines; but you have a religious objection to getting your second shot. Is that not good enough?

    Third shot.

    And no, it isn’t when doctors are put under duress to deny writing valid medical exemptions for genuinely disabled people.

    It’s not exactly right when I have pretty causative evidence and evidence of things that are happening to others. It’s fine for me to take it, for me maybe, but it is wrong to leave others in no mans land. And to act like this is okay because I found a loophole.

    So it’s real and it’s true, but a medical exemption is also true, and you may have a responsibility to help others by getting the medical exemption?

    • #27
  28. HankRhody Freelance Philosopher Contributor
    HankRhody Freelance Philosopher
    @HankRhody

    Sandy (View Comment):
    My understanding is that in applying for the religious exemption one is not subject to question as to one’s belief and there is nothing specific about the basis of one’s request for the exemption on the forms that I’ve seen.  Are people being denied exemptions on the basis of some question as to their beliefs? 

    Specifically here I was going off of a previous post by TheRightNurse:

    TheRightNurse: Religious exemptions will only be tolerated if they were previously known, documented, and thoroughly supported. No “new” exemptions will be allowed.

    More generally (and I apologize; I’ve been having trouble finding the words) I think exemptions may point to bad laws in the first place. You don’t need to build in exemptions for laws like “thou shalt not steal”; there are no kleptoreligionists who see the taking of things that don’t belong to them as a positive moral duty. 

    By contrast any time that you’re making a law that requires religious exceptions you’re using the government to wade into a moral question. Let’s say I’m a farmer who very much dislikes rye bread. I just don’t grow rye and that’s that. Now if the government starts imposing quotas on me for rye grown I can shout and holler for an exemption, but even if I get the exemption it doesn’t make a stupid law any less stupid.

    If TheRightNurse here applies for a religious exemption it isn’t because she needs a religious exemption; it’s because she can’t get the medical exemption she actually needs. But it’s a vaccination law. If it was just “Do what’s best for your health” you wouldn’t need to make that law because people obey that rule naturally. Instead it’s “Do what we tell you is best for your health, unless you can prove it otherwise”, and then they make it exceedingly difficult to prove otherwise. 

    • #28
  29. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    HankRhody Freelance Philosopher (View Comment):

    Specifically here I was going off of a previous post by TheRightNurse:

    TheRightNurse: Religious exemptions will only be tolerated if they were previously known, documented, and thoroughly supported. No “new” exemptions will be allowed.

    I guess that explains why my case for a religious exemption doesn’t work so well.

    Does the doctor signing a medical exemption have to be in-state?

    • #29
  30. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    HankRhody Freelance Philosopher (View Comment):
    More generally (and I apologize; I’ve been having trouble finding the words) I think exemptions may point to bad laws in the first place. You don’t need to build in exemptions for laws like “thou shalt not steal”; there are no kleptoreligionists who see the taking of things that don’t belong to them as a positive moral duty. 

    Preach!

    • #30
Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.