The debate over vaccine certificates – the votes are in
We had an unusually high number of responses to our informal poll last week. We took on the red-hot topic of vaccine certificates, or passports as they are sometimes called.
The sides of the debate over whether they are a pathway to normalcy, or to a more divided society, could not be farther apart.
Is a government-provided vaccine certificate to show proof that you are fully vaccinated a good idea, or a bad idea?
Over 170 people cast their vote in response to our question. By far, the vast majority of PeaceQuest readers (67%) say that vaccine certificates are a good idea. However, a significant percentage (32%) of people oppose them (and vaccines, too, for the most part). Very few people felt unsure (2%).
Reading the comments provided by many of our poll-takers, one notices the issue of vaccine certificates can’t be separated from vaccine hesitancy (or outright opposition).
Just like wearing masks, vaccination certificates get to the heart of the conversation about our notion of responsible conduct as a member of society vs. our perception of human rights and personal freedoms.
Below you will see the responses from readers. The comments may be troubling for some, since several people bring forward a number of claims that are not backed-up by science. For instance, the notion that vaccines are experimental “gene therapies” is mentioned frequently.
We considered carefully whether to publish these comments on PeaceQuest.ca, but felt that by sharing a few examples we could create a better understanding of the different views, and hopefully, create the basis for dialogue.
- How to talk about vaccines, published by the World Health Organization
You will also note there are people who are opposed to vaccine certificates on grounds other than unscientific theories about vaccines. For instance, a recent report from the UK found that vaccines may have little impact on a person’s potential to spread the Delta variant of the virus. Does this not negate the objective of vaccine certificates? It’s a valid question.
Our thanks to everyone who participated.
Good idea – When I was growing up, they were called immunization cards.
Good idea – It’s merely protection from the further spread of the virus particularly from those who have flaunted their unfounded belief in a conspiracy by ???
Good idea – We can choose to be vaccinated or not. However, many people are vulnerable and truly frightened so for them to be able to go out and mix with people it is essential that they know they are in a safe place. Those who choose not to have the vaccine also choose to be excluded for the safety of the rest of society That is their own choice and they will have to accept the choice of others to feel safe too.
Good idea – Collective tools are needed to deal with the collective threat of covid.
Good idea – Proof of vaccination is one important piece in moving forward in our new world, for the public good. I am asking my friends and acquaintances as I meet up with them – are you double dosed? I need to know if I need to mask and socially distance with them. So it makes good sense to me that our institutions, whether for work, education, play, travel, entertainment, shopping, can be asking that question too.
Good idea – I don’t want to share indoor public places with people who are not vaccinated.
Good idea – I think Macron in his recent announcement to fellow Parisians got it right. Why should the civic minded and vaccinated be put at risk and inconvenienced in public places. It should’ be the unvaccinated who bear this burden. That is, of course, only after every effort is made to ensure everyone who wants a vaccination has the opportunity. Special cases should be exempted with a required doctor’s certificate.
Good idea – Covid is a disease that kills. The vaccine is very effective at reducing serious complications and death from covid. Unvaccinated people are far more likely to get the disease, allowing the virus to mutate. At some point, with enough mutations, the vaccine may not be effective. If that happens, society goes back to the start of the pandemic when nobody was protected. Vaccinated people need to be identified because their movement will be less restricted; this fact will encourage unvaccinated people to get their shots.
Good idea – ” It is not only a good idea but essential for the health and safety of all people around the world. New varients and waves are forming which are worse than the previous changes as if they are trying to outsmart the humans all the time. We need to be more cautious about moving too quickly into opening everything up and providing more freedom. We still need the protection. Thank you for asking us to share on this issue.”
Good idea – It’s the easiest way to show you are vaccinated wherever it is required for attendance, entry, etc. Why would anyone object? It keeps you and others safe.
Good idea – As members of a society we have a moral responsibility to consider the effects of our action on others. Vaccine Passports will help to keep gatherings safe and help us to know where we are more or less safe from COVID.
Good idea – Anywhere that people mingle, the potential exists for disease transmission. Everybody has a responsibility to protect the health of others. That trumps any concerns about ‘freedom’.
Good idea – We need to be able to open up our lives again. With certificates we could move amongst each other safely, without fear. Certificate requirement would pressure people to get vaccinated which is a good thing!
Good idea – It is not enough to only consider oneself. We are part of a community and the impact on others of spreading around these variants can be tragic. Just as you wouldn’t close your eyes and drive through a crowd of people, you shouldn’t avoid vaccines and then spread viruses around.
Good idea – Abundant scientific evidence has now accumulated to show that vaccination significantly curtails the spread of COVID–19 , thereby reducing individual suffering and saving lives. To refuse vaccination means putting unsubstantiated personal objections ahead of public safety. Those acting in line with scientific evidence have a right to protect themselves from the increased danger of being infected by those who prefer self – indulgence to common sense.
Good idea – Before my individual freedom can be considered, it is morally correct that the interests of the whole of society must come first. We have a virus pandemic across our planet, it is amoral for individuals to not be vaccinated and spread this virus, which is mutating and causing more waves. Yesterday’s news indicated that we are probably entering a fourth wave in Canada. Each new mutation has the capacity to be more difficult to control and therefore more dangerous than the previous one.
Good idea – Compulsory vaccines, yes, but an alternative with ongoing testing and precautions for those who can’t get the vaccine.
Good idea – This is nothing new. If I want to travel to certain countries I would have to show proof of vaccination.
Good idea – “This is health science, not politics or religion. Those who wish to have a right to go unvaccinated, but they no right to put others at risk.
Good idea – As the article points out, this is not a new idea. “An international Certificate of Vaccination against yellow fever is required to enter some countries. In several provinces — including Ontario, New Brunswick, and British Columbia — students attending public schools must demonstrate proof of immunization against a number of diseases.” The requirement must be ” thoughtfully implemented and justly administered.” There is much concern in some countries, e.g. France, that the certificate would be used to gain access to personal information for purposes other than public health. I believe this is unlikely to be the case in Canada.
Good idea – Internationally, countries have a solid tradition of requiring specified vaccinations before people are allowed entry; e.g. vs. yellow fever. Surely this fits global wisdom to prevent disease and death.
Good idea – Being physically safe and sane at the same time is important to me. Any opposing this vaccine might not be aware that they were properly vaccinated as young children, with the MMR and haven’t experienced a life without vaccines. I had whooping cough as a child, and my son had mumps when he was 3, before MMR was developed.
Good idea – There many other examples in life that follow the same principles. When all is said and done the common good overrides individual rights.
Good idea – It’s a simple matter of the common good. Our collective safety is more important than individual preferences in public health matters.
Good idea – A vaccine certificate will be an incentive to the unvaccinated and a boon to those of us wishing to resume foreign travel.
Good idea – It could be included in our vaccination booklet or on our devices as we already have the info. we need for foreign travel. Just the vaccine info, and name, nothing else.
Good idea – At first I was an ‘unsure’, but perhaps one standardized form (nationally) would work. FYI I still wear my masks when in indoor spaces, especially on busses.
Good idea – “I think it is a good idea because organizations, airports, customs, apartment rentals, etc may not take the person’s word for having both vaccines. Too many people don’t believe COVID–19 is real and they may lie to still be allowed to continue to live as they do. COVID–19 is real and it is deadly. The variants are worse and without vaccines, those people who aren’t protected are walking time bombs. I just had my 2nd vaccine and I know in two weeks I will be able to do anything or go anywhere. I recommend everyone to get the vaccine.”
Good idea – If this helps stop the spread of the virus then there shouldn’t be a question as to whether it’s good or bad. There are countries all over the world where you have to have proof of vaccinations before entering the country. Some industries require certain vaccinations such as the food industry, which in some cases require a hepatitis vaccination. Many school districts around the world also require proof of vaccination.
Good idea – I wonder how these will work for those of us who cannot afford to have cellphone service. Low income people will need an alternative to a certificate on a cellphone. And then again what about those of us who are unable to have the vaccine due to allergies. So many unanswered questions need to be addressed. The certificates are not about population control, they are about having respect for our and our fellow citizens health.
Good idea – Must be certifiable, consistent nationally, not easily counterfeited. Equivalent must be produced by foreign travellers entering Canada by all means. Anti-vaxxers and those who can’t be bothered are free to exercise their freedom.
Good idea – We have a vital tool to counter the spread of COVID–19 in the vaccines we have been provided but vaccination rates are still too low, threatening the health of not only the unvaccinated but also the vaccinated with the possibility of new variants that could overcome vaccine immunity. To counter this we need to incentivize individuals to get vaccinated while also protecting those who have received the vaccine from deadly new variants. That’s why we need a vaccine certificate to help protect everyone’s public health.
Good idea – “Vaccines have expanded human lifespan more than any other innovation. They save lives. The deliberately unvaccinated put lives at risk. Their contention that their rights to do as they please and thus potentially expose others are being undermined by regulations could be applied to licences to drive or fly or to use firearms. As long as everyone has unimpeded access to vaccines and we protect those who have valid medical reasons for not being vaccinated we should take this step for a limited period of time. If the anti – vaxers have to stay home: tough. “
Good idea – It is about time for governments to take charge and stop fiddling while Canada burns if we are ever going to live with this.
Good idea – “There already a booklet for international travel that used to record vacations. However it lacked authentication security. I don’t see what the fuss is about. Plus I don’t understand all those people suddenly with no qualification deciding they don’t need to be vaccinated. We have already reduced the freedom of smokers so I can have the freedom to breath clean air. Freedom is not a one way street.”
Good idea – We have been accustomed to such things by documenting our children ‘s vaccinations and I see only positive results from doing the same with COVID.
Good idea – We already have mandated rules that are in place for the greater good in terms of health and safety, such as proof of vaccines to go to school and proof of age for the consumption of alcohol and to drive a vehicle. A vaccine passport requirement is completely in line with our societal norms to protect each other and should not be treated as an outlier issue – it needs to just be done.
Good idea – COVID, now with the Delta Variant, is such an extreme threat it is time to act decisively and require at least evidence of vaccination. Better yet would be to require that evidence to take part in virtually every activity that brings people into close contact with others. No exceptions. Special arrangements may be needed for those with health conditions that prevent vaccine use, so governments and employers must be required to provide for those special cases.
Good idea – In principle it’s a good idea. In practice it would be challenging. How do we enforce it? What about people who can’t be vaccinated for medical reasons? If this could be implemented with a high degree of success there would be much less exposure to the virus. The trick is actually making it work.
Good idea – I could not agree more with Christopher. I made a printed copy of the record issued by the Ontario Ministry of Health of my having received two valid cases, identifying me uniquely with my date of birth and the last 4 digits of my Health Card, and I carry it with me.
Good idea – Vaccination is part of protecting the Common Good.
Good idea – For the most part I support a vaccine passport for travel to other countries, but I am uncertain about this as it relates to national and regional travel. I do feel given the disabling of the economy and social fabric of Covid related decisions and increase of the mental health challenges as well, that a high age of people should be encouraged to vaccinate for the overall herd immunity…but can we enforce a mandatory vaccine on those who are either compromised and have not been medically advised to get the vaccine or those who feel strongly it’s contrary to the way they wish to treat their bodies?
Good idea – In the interest of the greater good this is likely a helpful measure in protecting everyone. Just as choosing to not get vaccinated is and should be your choice having a certificate enables those who have been vaccinated to feel safer and also to protect both the unvaccinated and vaccinated from mingling. Freedom is not simply being able to do whatever you want it is taking responsibility for yourself and others including their safety and well being.
Bad idea – Will serve only to divide, based on increasing the righteousness and vindictiveness of the experiment subjects…
Bad idea – “Where are your papers” is part of a Nazi agenda.
Bad idea – Based on History labels and propaganda only lead to death and destruction.
Bad idea – Not the government’s business.
Bad idea – It is a very bad idea because it is essentially meaningless. We still don’t know how long immunity will last. Some medical professionals are talking about the need for an annual jab while others say a monthly one might be necessary. We clearly don’t know what we are doing. Some countries in the “”western collective”” are not recognising Russia’s nor China’s vaccines, even though they have been approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO). This month (July 2021) WHO’s experts said coronavirus vaccinations should not be the only requisite for reopening international travel, as many countries around the world continue to have limited access to immunizations. The Emergency Committee said that “requiring proof of vaccination deepens inequities and promotes unequal freedom of movement.” Countries with limited access to COVID–19 vaccines could face exclusion, according to health experts.
Bad idea – Many epidemics and temporary outbreaks of disease have come and gone without the need for vaccine passports. Every year, people manage to get through potentially deadly flu seasons without requiring vaccines, and COVID–19 will likely settle into an endemic cycle which will make vaccine passports redundant.
Bad idea – Vaccine passports, in my opinion, are a way of hijacking our civil liberties and human rights. Harms have been caused by the vaccines in question, information that is readily available on government websites. In addition there is credible evidence that other forms of protection exist, ivermectin for example. We are denying others the right to refuse a medical intervention. The fact of the matter is, if someone is injured by the vaccine who will be held responsible? No one! If vaccine passports are accepted, what other vaccines will be required to keep the passport updated. We suspended out human rights voluntarily to help combat Covid. Changing the terms of of our human rights, to require vaccine passports in order to participate freely in society, is in my opinion a huge betrayal of trust by our government. I think the notion of certificates is disgraceful.
Bad idea – This will break society in pieces. People have reasons for their decisions. I have seen individuals being shunned for not getting vaccinated even if there are health concerns that would make such a procedure dangerous for them. This is a time to bring all people together; not pull us apart.
Bad idea – Each vaccine is different and each person is so different the effectiveness is not predictable, especially against variants.
Bad idea – I’ll pass on global grand reset with totalitarian overtones. Thanks for asking. A two tiered populace has very poor historical connotations. Medical freedom is true freedom. Democracy is not conditional. Stop the lies already.
Bad idea – Totally bad idea. I do not trust the government or big pharma to be concerned about my health – they are not even liable for deaths and damages caused by the experimental “vaccination”. Follow the money – that’s what it’s about.
Bad idea – Not all of us can be vaccinated. It is a breach of democratic rights.
Bad idea – Vaccine passports only serve to restrict the movement of the unvaccinated, i.e. the people that see through the (depopulation) agenda. They are inherently discriminatory. The real reason, like ALL other fakery that constitutes this scamdemic is to ultimately control every individual’s life and restrict, prevent and/or control every kind of interaction with others. Medical tyranny by a government that lies and lies on behalf of a corrupt medical cabal and “”health”” officials; moronic ideologues who have shown they will happily corrupt and politicize science.
Bad idea – There’s already too much Government surveillance Worldwide & I do also believe it will divide our society even further than it already is.
Bad idea – What is the point of a vaccine passport or certificate? If a person is vaccinated, they are protected, the unvaccinated are the ones who are not “”protected”.
Bad idea – Vaccine passports would be a violation of personal and health information privacy. They would also be a violation of human rights, as they could potentially deny people the right to access certain essential services, as well as prevent their ability to move freely in society.
Bad idea – Where is the research on immunity from prior infection?
Bad idea – Medical info is private. This goes against charter of rights and freedoms.
Bad idea – Make your own health decision as you see fit and resume your life. I choose to eat well, exercise daily, take supplements and vitamins to support my immune system. This virus is a moving target that will require untold numbers of boosters for every variant (see Israel and the UK now) – this is not my choice to follow this path! If you have a reaction to the jab your freedom to participate in society will keep you in a jail of your own making if passports are implemented. Please support eachother and lets move forward – not in fear.
Bad idea – I agree with the CCLA take on this – no vaccine certificate. There are still many people who have not yet been able to get their vaccines, so why are we rushing into a certificate that will separate society not just on being vaccinated or not but separating them on perhaps many ways we haven’t realized yet. Society and government are rushing into the idea of a certificate without analyzing all of the ramifications. A certificate just says that a person has received the vaccines but does not guarantee that they are not carriers of the virus, so why bother. Just keep the masking and distancing indoors, but not outdoors since the virus has been shown to spread through the air indoors but not much outdoors. A certificate may be the precursor to all manner of requirements to carry an I.D. card, which can be the downfall of whatever freedoms we have left in a democracy.
Bad idea – It will breed segregation against people who cannot receive a vaccine due to medical issue