OSHA's Mandate is Based on Outdated Science
The attempts to dictate how people operate in the workplace are depending upon incoherent science and policies.
Right now the US Supreme Court is is hearing arguments about OSHA’s workplace mandate.
In summary, the mandate would enforce the policy that workplaces need to follow either a vaccinated or mask & test procedure.
As someone who has tried to following the science as it evolves, I did not come into this expecting much from this hearing in terms of science. However, It’s becoming clearly obvious that there’s plenty of misinformation being spouted in the hearing.
I won’t argue against the claims made on a basis of law, but based on whether the evidence supports the ideas laid forth by the mandate.
First off, remember that this mandate states that those who are vaccinated will not be required to wear a mask in the workplace while those who remain unvaccinated must follow a masking & testing procedure.
All across the country the hope was that hitting “herd immunity” through vaccination would end the need for mask mandates, mainly due to the supposition that vaccines would stop viral transmission and infection. Yet, months after nationwide vaccinations began the mask mandate remains in many states and counties. How can that be?
It’s because, merely a few months after vaccines were implemented, we received clear evidence that the vaccines did not stop the spread of the virus.
Here’s Dr. Fauci stating that if you are vaccinated it is very unlikely for you to become infected (taken from May):
Then in July Dr. Fauci discussed how these vaccines are not stopping transmission (linked is the proper timestamp):
So this is interesting. First, we were told that the vaccines would stop infection and thus no masks would be needed. Then, two months after, we are told that the prevalence of Delta required both vaccination and reimposed masking guidelines.
Here are two points where the OSHA mandate makes no sense. Because we know that “fully” vaccinated people are able to spread the virus, does it then make sense that they would not be required to wear a mask? Wouldn’t they impose a similar danger onto others?
But here’s the other kicker as well; changing variants should lead to adjusting policies. Again, in the face of Omicron why has OSHA continued to follow an incoherent guideline that has clearly not been updated to meet the needs of a new variant, especially considering that mounting evidence suggests that the original vaccine dosing regimen does not provide the same protection against Omicron; only a boosting regimen may possibly provide protection against Omicron.
In order to be consistent shouldn’t OSHA update their mandates to only allow no masking for only those who have been boosted? Clearly the vaccines have lost effectiveness against Omicron with the original dosing regimen, and plenty of other evidence is continuing to mount to suggest as much.
So on the basis of vaccinations, clearly none of the policies outlined in the OSHA mandate make sense; vaccinated people are still capable of becoming infected and thus transmit the virus. Based on this premise alone, it stands to reason that the unvaccinated are far more likely to be less dangerous than those who are vaccinated considering their constant testing would monitor them for any virus.
And remember, those who decide to not be vaccinated are taking the risk upon themselves. The concern about spread of the disease works both ways, and yet we are led to believe that the vaccinated should be worried about the unvaccinated. More scare mongering from those who should be the most protected.
But then what about those who are not capable of getting vaccinated due to autoimmune disease or other health issues? Again, vaccinated individuals are still able to spread the virus, and if masks are as beneficial as we are supposed to believe wouldn’t it make sense to mandate masking for all employees? Adding more to the point, wouldn’t it make proper sense to enforce employees wear the proper masks (N95 or KN95) and not the cloths, surgical, or even double-masking that people are continuing to do.
And just to hammer this point down again, heavily vaccinated areas are still seeing infection outbreaks. Gibraltar, which has a vaccination rate of 100% is continuing to see outbreaks of COVID. Israel, another country with one of the highest vaccination rates, is still seeing rising cases. Israel provides an interesting contentious point against boosters, as Israel has mandated boosters yet continue to see rising case numbers, to the point that a 4th dose of Pfizer’s vaccine is being recommended for those over the age of 60.
The argument over whether OSHA is pushing a vaccine mandate under the guise of workplace guidelines remains controversial, yet the evidence is mounting that this is an attempt by the federal government to work around the inability to enforce a federal vaccine mandate. The policy being provided can’t be seen as anything more than providing benefits to those who have decided to get vaccinated, rather than providing any substantial scientific evidence.
As of now, Omicron is seeming like a godsend to the end of the pandemic. Even as cases rise, most cases are being reported as being mild in nature.
None of the policies brought forth during the COVID era has made much sense, and they certainly haven’t been based on continuously evolving science.
OSHA does not operate as a medical entity, and if OSHA is basing their guidelines off of evidence from the CDC then they clearly are not keeping up with that evolving evidence.
Many of our lives have been shaped by federal policies more than evidence-based policies. All this OSHA mandate will do is lead to the denigration and labeling of those who are unvaccinated, that people in the workplace who should be the most protected should be scared of their coworkers, even if they should be protected.
We need more rational policies, not policies intent on labeling and discriminating against certain groups of people who have chosen a different risk assessment path.
Otherwise, if the Biden administration wants to continue to create greater division in the nation, this would be the best way to do it.
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