Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s forced vaccination mandate has made the past few weeks interesting. A handful of first responders, in addition to many other state employees, are going to be terminated.

I have been in a number of conversations about the vaccination and the mandate. These conversations included topics such as the legality of the mandate and the affront to personal liberty when a government forces its will on the citizens.

I’ll circle back to this later.

My avid readers know I have incredible intuition, superb logic, and my opinions are on target. I am careful to apply my rationale and reasoning consistently. You’re on solid logical ground when you agree with Scotty!

Good opinions need to be based in facts. New facts may strengthen, weaken or force an opinion change. If you’re not willing to alter an opinion based on updated information, you might be allowing confirmation bias to cloud what could be a logical mind.

One’s ability to be logical takes a willingness to be a critical thinker and to evaluate all angles and review many sources for facts and information.

Presenting facts is not always enough to sway opinions in people. Too often it is emotions and not logic that rule the brain. Some people believe an evolving opinion is a sign of flip-flopping or worse, weakness. That cannot be further from the truth. When opinions evolve with updated facts and information it shows a logical mind.

I am going to circle back to my conversations with people about the vaccine mandates. I am genuinely curious to learn why people are for or against getting the vaccination.

I tend to outright reject the reasoning which includes claims that COVID-19 is not real. Many of the other positions I have heard are not unreasonable. For example, there is limited long-term information about the difference between natural immunity and vaccinations for COVID-19.

Over the years, in my columns, I have argued it is better to use education to get people to change their behavior (or position) rather than the heavy hand of the government. Getting people to accept the COVID-19 vaccination is no different.

There needs to be an honest look at natural immunity and how it fits with uninfected people getting a vaccination. To completely discount naturally gained immunity seems to go against the idea of “follow the science.”

Because of the continuous talk of hospitalizations, some people believe a large number of those who get infected also get hospitalized. However, it’s actually a small number. Those who know the numbers may believe the likelihood of having life-threatening complications is less of a worry than the unknown long-term effects of the vaccination. This is where I point out the long-term effects of a COVID-19 infection are just as unknown. If one is to be consistent then he must evaluate both unknowns.

What is also lost on the masses is the number of vaccinated people who need hospitalization is extremely minuscule. Some will counter that people who get the vaccination still get COVID-19. While that’s true, a minuscule number of them ever see the inside of a hospital because of it. This week it was reported on the local news that nearly 95 percent of the people currently hospitalized in our area are unvaccinated.

Do the math. The likelihood of a COVID-19 hospitalization is small and the likelihood of a vaccinated person being hospitalized is much smaller. In fact, an article from August shows the hospitalization rate for Washington per 100,000 people. The rate for vaccinated people is 12. For unvaccinated people it’s 606. That is a significant difference.

One piece of information that would be great is the percentage of those currently hospitalized who had a previous COVID-19 infection – in other words have natural immunity.

Ultimately, is Inslee’s mandate morally right? Just like most things, it’s debatable.

Anderson is a computer programmer who enjoys serving the community through various community-oriented service jobs.

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