‘This is a free country’: UFC’s Dana White refuses to require vaccines for fighters

President Joe Biden and other Democratic leaders have been pushing for increasingly strict COVID-19 vaccine mandates — but many Americans are resisting in various ways.

Most recently, the head of the Ultimate Fighting Championship league announced that he would not be imposing vaccine mandates on competitors. According to reports, Dana White made it clear that he plans to leave that decision up to individuals.

“You do what you want”

“My fighters can get vaccinated or not,” he declared in an interview with Fox News Channel personality Brian Kilmeade on Friday.

He went on to argue that it should be “your choice” as an American to either receive or refuse a vaccine.

“If you want to get vaccinated — your body,” White added. “This is a free country. You do what you want.”

Of course, his attitude has received some pushback, particularly as the UFC is set to host an event at New York City’s Madison Square Garden, which will require vaccinations for spectators and participants alike. Although unvaccinated fans will not be able to attend that fight in person, White offered them some reassurance.

“If you’re vaccinated and you want to come to the event, you can come to the event in New York,” he said. “If you’re not, we’re going to be putting on 44 events around the country. You can go to one of those shows.”

“People just want some normalcy again”

The recent interview also touched on the UFC’s approach to the COVID-19 pandemic in general. White said he has been able to manage the league without cutting salaries or laying anyone off.

“Going through the pandemic the way that we did — finding solutions to problems instead of hiding — was the best thing that we’ve ever done,” he said, adding that he was motivated by a desire to “take care” of his employees.

According to White, the mood in America is beginning to shift regarding COVID-19 and various other issues. He cited the recent upset victory by GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin in Virginia’s gubernatorial race as an example.

“I think you see the tide starting to turn now,” he opined. “I even see some people on the crazy liberal side now saying, ‘Whoa, what are we doing here?’ … I think people just want some normalcy again. You’re seeing it in Virginia.”

Millions of Americans fed up with the heavy-handed approach to vaccines and other COVID-19 mitigation measures are hoping that White is right.

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