The coronavirus and subsequent government response to the pandemic has been a disaster for most Americans' economic, mental, and physical well-being.
But the coronavirus has been wonderful for a certain handful of people: The would-be tyrants who derive their meaning in life from controlling people.
This is because they have wielded the pandemic to their own advantage and to grow government power. In doing so, these public "servants" have inched America towards the kind of communism as seen in China.
Even though most lockdowns utterly failed on any reasonable cost-benefit analysis, that class of bureaucrats, government unions, and HR apparatchiks imposed them anyway.
Because these mandates fed the illusion that authorities had things under control. It indulged their sense that they were "pro-science." In truth, these tyrants had no other ideas about how to stop the spread. They were simply terrified of doing nothing at all.
But an overlooked reason driving these unthinkable power grabs was that our leaders now take cues from authoritarian China.
Quite simply, the virus is not nearly dangerous enough to justify coercive measures and stripping freedoms.
But tyrants want them anyway.
In many cases, safety appears irrelevant compared to the sheer glee of forcing the recalcitrant to submit or lose basic rights now recast as privileges.
Just like lockdowns and the coronavirus itself, vaccine passports are another toxic import from China.
Thse passports draw clear inspiration from the CCP’s sinister social credit system.
The right has a duty to resist these passports utterly. For any Republican seeking office in 2022 or 2024, opposing COVID passports right now is a basic litmus test.
It’s a test that Florida’s Ron DeSantis has passed with flying colors. He issued an executive order banning all vaccine passports late last month.
Conservatives must monitor their own state and local leaders to make sure they do the same thing. Otherwise, we'll soon move beyond passports for vaccines, and into passports to monitor other areas of society that the left deems unsafe.
The only thing that will protect America’s remaining freedoms from CCP wannabes who put America Last is perpetual vigilance, and legal action, from America First allies.
-- Catharine O'Neill, April 8 Newsmax column