Scott Tibbs

COVID-19 has spawned competing cults

By Scott Tibbs, January 26, 2022

Our public policy debates over COVID19 are hopelessly poisoned. There is no room for dissent or disagreement, and extremists on both the Right and Left treat any deviation from the Confession of Faith as an act of heresy and apostasy. It is all or nothing, and you have to pick a side. But this is not a religious test and it should not be. Why is it wrong for people to think for themselves?

I am fully vaccinated against COVID-19. I have defended the vaccines, and encouraged people I know to get vaccinated. I disagree with county government's mask mandate, but I still wear a mask every single time I go into a public place. (See Romans 13.) But because I do not think children should be forced to either double-mask or wear a KN95, I have been accused of being happy with 900,000 deaths from COVID-19.

This is what a cult looks like, folks. Either you are in 100% agreement, all of the time, or you are a murderer. There is no room for dissent or disagreement. This cult mentality is why there is so much distrust and why we are so divided. The COVID-19 "cult of safety" has been behaving like this from the very beginning, attempting to shut down discussion of policy by calling opponents murderers. It is depraved, and it is a cult. Demanding 100% total agreement, with no questions allowed, is what cults do.

The Right is often just as guilty as the Left. In the same Twitter thread, I was called a wimp for wearing a mask in public places indoors. Our only way out of overly burdensome restrictions is noncompliance, and by obeying the law I am betraying the cause of freedom. Like the knee-jerk reaction of saying those who disagree are "murderers," there is no sense of proportion. This, in a nutshell, is everything that is wrong with our politics. Extremists on both sides are demanding 100% total agreement.

Once again, this is how a cult operates.

There is no reason it had to be this way. There is no reason people had to retreat into respective ideological camps, fully embracing government restrictions or opposing all of them. There actually is room for a rational analysis of pandemic mitigation policy. I am hopeful that the vast majority of people are reasonable, but the debate has been so poisoned by the extremes that those people are far too often pushed aside.

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