Can Vaccine Mandates Be Justified? A Soho Forum Debate
Is there a libertarian case for vaccine mandates? George Mason University Law Professor Ilya Somin supports vaccine mandates in certain cases because he believes they're a relatively "small infringement on freedom" and are preferable to harm reduction strategies like mask mandates and lockdowns, which he sees as posing a greater threat to our liberties. Angela McArdle, the chair of the Libertarian Party of Los Angeles County, says she'll "actively work to destroy any institution that tries to enforce a vaccine passport," and is currently launching legal challenges to overturn vaccine mandates in California and New York. On September 8, Somin and McArdle went head-to-head at the Soho Forum in New York City. Somin took the affirmative, and McArdle the negative, on the resolution: While vaccine mandates are an infringement on freedom, some are justified due to their big payoff in lives saved.