It is absolutely ridiculous that COVID-19 passports or vaccine certificates become more and more acceptable in our society. Currently, there are serious efforts to let those who have been vaccinated (and those who’ve been infected) re-enter life. Those who have not been vaccinated yet or those who have been infected asymptomatically are still waiting to regain their basic rights.
I am strongly against this idea and social movement. Vaccine passports or certificates are an atom bomb against equity. They will divide our society.
There are Millions of young people worldwide who have been infected asymptomatically (and probably don’t even know it). I’m one of them (I know about it). These millions of young people have either developed immunity against COVID-19 or their immune system is robust enough to fight the virus effectively anyway.
16-year-old males have a hospitalization rate of 0.6% and a death rate of far below 0.1%. Males of my age (27 years) have a hospitalization rate of 2.3% (who likely already have underlying medical conditions) and a death rate of also below 0.1%. (Economist, March 2021)
With COVID-19 passports, young healthy children, teenagers, and adults are first discriminated against and secondly pushed to get a vaccine they most likely don’t need. Which, I believe, is extremely unethical.
But it is not all about young people. There are those who – out of many reasons -cannot or want not get vaccinated. Individual decision-making is their absolute right and must be respected unchallenged.
Vaccines must become available as soon as possible to everyone who needs and wants them – especially to elderly people. After that, a vaccine passport becomes stupidly pointless anyway. Especially in healthy young people, governments should strive for natural herd immunity.
As Clare Wenham puts it beautifully in her opinion piece in The Economist:
“[…] So begins a new phase in society, where a person’s health status dictates what they may do in life. If this invites more discrimination, especially against marginalised people, the responsibility is not just on the governments who enabled it, but on everyone who didn’t speak out against it.”