The quote is from David Frum, the former GWB speechwriter. He is currently an editor at The Atlantic and goes on MSNBC sometimes, in a recent tweet thread of that proverbial hellward pavement.
Well, let’s hope Mr. Frum’s suggestions are intended for good and that anyone must be misunderstanding him who thinks Frum is seriously proposing that hospitals start letting people die because they haven’t been vaccinated against the coronavirus. (Though he did dig into his position when he got blowback from horrified readers in the reply thread.)
Here’s what he said, first comparing Americans who have made the personal health decision not to get a coronavirus vaccine. This elective, invasive medical procedure alters the way the human body works to cancer on America:
“However, the malignant minority is not going to listen to reason anytime soon. Even seemingly simple regulations like ‘no jab, no fly’ appear beyond the US federal government’s enforcement capacity. So, what’s next?”
According to the CDC, there were 599,601 cancer deaths in the United States in 2019. We haven’t turned our entire society inside out and our whole world upside down to prevent those deaths. Instead, there has been a concerted, targeted, non-disruptive effort for decades to prevent and treat cancer that has had success in substantially lowering cancer deaths per 100,000 in America.
But anyway, comparing people to cancer is either dehumanizing, pre-genocidal scapegoating kind of talk, or he’s trying to sound like the cool kids on Fortnite Twitch. But either way, it’s hardly endearing for The Atlantic or MSNBC. Okay, here’s what he said:
“It appears that the best solution is to 1) continue to encourage immunizations and boosters; 2) impose vaccine mandates where possible; 3) otherwise, return to normal as fully as possible, particularly in schools; and 4) let hospitals quietly triage emergency care to serve the unvaccinated last.”
That fourth suggestion is both sneaky and bizarre. That seems like something the Bush-era neocons would tell you is going on in one of the Axis of Evil countries, like Hussein’s Ba’athist Iraq or Kim Jong Il’s People’s Democratic Republic of Korea, and why they needed the hell liberated.
Triage in hospital emergency departments is ethically practiced to improve patient outcomes, not a tool to hold the public hostage to anyone’s public health policy priorities or political agenda. In this case, they happen to be controversial priorities and agendas.
And Frum is suggesting something worse than this. He’s not proposing an official and transparent policy of vaccination apartheid in providing US health care services. He’s offering a “quietly” practiced conspiracy, in hospitals, to?
To have doctors and nurses quietly take revenge on “the unvaccinated” by intentionally causing these people discomfort or pain at best, maybe even letting them suffer from permanent complications from illness or injury, or even die?
According to the American College of Emergency Physicians:
“The Society for Academic Emergency Medicine’s (SAEM) position is that refusal of care based on triage is only ethically justified if the triage criteria ‘are based on research that shows them to be safe and effective.’”