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Editorial Board of Salt Lake Tribune Calls for Governor to Use National Guard Against Unvaccinated

AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes

An alarming amount of Democrats, as Scott highlighted, support strict government action against the unvaccinated, according to a recent poll from the Heartland Institute and Rasmussen Reports. That desire for such force against unvaccinated citizens has been extended to the mainstream media with a January 15 editorial from The Salt Lake Tribune calling on Gov. Spencer Cox (R) to activate the National Guard to prevent unvaccinated Utahans from participating in society.


That's actually what it says:

Were Utah a truly civilized place, the governor’s next move would be to find a way to mandate the kind of mass vaccination campaign we should have launched a year ago, going as far as to deploy the National Guard to ensure that people without proof of vaccination would not be allowed, well, anywhere.

The paragraph in question is third to last in an editorial that is whiny and unbearable even before then. "Utah leaders have surrendered to COVID pandemic, the Editorial Board writes," is the headline they went with.

Such a dangerously absurd call was quickly exposed and called out over Twitter.


It's also worth highlighting that the excerpt The Salt Lake Tribune's tweet went with, included below, is misleading:

Government officials, mostly but not exclusively Republicans, were apparently determined not to be caught governing in the face of this challenge. Any move or recommendation to mask up or, when safe and effective vaccines became available, to make vaccination a requirement of admission to public places and society in general was shouted down as an unwarranted imposition on individual freedoms.

The editorial garnered the attention of Deidre Henderson, Utah's Republican lieutenant governor. 

It has consistently been the position of Republican officials to yes, speak about "individual freedoms" as a reason to come out against vaccine mandates, but also to encourage people get vaccinated as the best defense against the Wuhan coronavirus. One can see that very form of encouragement above in Lt. Gov. Henderson's tweets.


The editorial even goes on to acknowledge that, but then utterly dismisses the idea of encouraging something because it doesn't force someone to do something:

Cox and others have correctly said that the best tool for fighting the spread of the virus, individually and collectively, was to get two — then three — doses of the vaccine. That is absolutely the correct advice.

But Cox and so many others have not carried the courage of their convictions. Cox, state legislative leaders, our congressional delegation and Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes have so proudly stood against the kind of vaccine mandates that civilized society has used for generations to effectively wipe out everything from polio to diphtheria to the measles.

Gov. Cox on January 6 posted a video message to his website, "GOV. COX PLEADS WITH UTAHNS TO GET VACCINATED, BOOSTED."

The Salt Lake County Republican Party issued a statement on the editorial from Chair Chris Null which supported the governor's approach and also demanded an apology from the news outlet, emphasizing that "Utah deserves an apology from the Salt Lake Tribune."

The statement goes on to read in part that "The Editorial Board pretends to have all the answers, disparaging a proven safe and highly effective Nobel Prize-winning drug by calling it a “horse de-wormer”, in effect giving (bad) medical advice. They manage to echo the level of hate and bigotry that sounds more like 1933 Nazi Germany, as Hitler took over, than present-day Utah – the state that “keeps the American dream alive.” We cannot allow this thinking to enter our society. The Salt Lake Tribune must apologize to the people of Utah and reign in these board members before their infection spreads worse than the pandemic we are already fighting."


Utah was involved in a lawsuit against the Biden administration's vaccine mandate that would have used Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to force private employers with 100 or more employees to have vaccine or regular testing mandates. 

Last Thursday the U.S. Supreme Court blocked such a mandate in a 6-3 ruling. 

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