Several Republican-run states are looking to make sure that vaccine passports do become a reality, at least in their states.
What we are talking about here is making it necessary for people to show proof that they have received their coronavirus vaccine before they can participate in various aspects of life. It may sound like something that you would only expect to read about in a dystopian novel, but it’s happening – in the United States. More on that in a minute.
Florida and Ohio say “no”
For those familiar with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), it will come as no surprise that DeSantis has come out as strongly opposed to vaccine passports, which he has referred to as “completely unacceptable.”
“The vaccine passport is a terrible idea,” DeSantis has said. “We are definitely not going to require anything from the state’s perspective. That is totally off the table.”
Accordingly, DeSantis is looking to have the Florida legislature take action to prevent vaccine passports from ever becoming a reality. And, in the meantime, DeSantis is reportedly considering issuing an executive order on the matter.
It’s a similar story in Ohio. There, two state lawmakers, Republican Reps. Al Cutrona and Mike Loychik, are looking to pass a piece of legislation preemptively banning vaccine passports.
“I want to make sure that we put a stop on this from the government,” Cutrona said. “It’s a false sense of security, a false sense of normalcy, and frankly, I think it’s a very slippery slope that we’re heading down.”
Loychik added that the bill they are looking to introduce is a necessary step “to protect people’s rights,” specifically their right to privacy.
This all follows New York becoming the first state to launch a vaccine passport program, which is being called the “Excelsior Pass.”
USA Today described the program as being similar to “an airline boarding pass” where “people will be able to prove their health status with a digital QR code – or ‘quick response’ machine-readable label.”
“The Excelsior Pass will play a critical role in getting information to venues and sites in a secure and streamlined way, allowing us to fast-track the reopening of these businesses and getting us one step closer to reaching a new normal,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said in a statement announcing the program.
It’s New York’s initiative, here, that is driving Republican-run states like Florida and Ohio to take preventative action. If you think that vaccine passports are a bad idea and you still live in a Democrat-run state, it is probably time to leave.