When Francois de La Rochefoucaul said “hypocrisy is the compliment vice pays to virtue,” he certainly wasn’t thinking of Ted Cruz specifically but he might as well have been. Who but Cruz could rail against the federal government’s (nonexistent) program to interfere with anyone’s personal health decisions while basing his argument on personal freedom of choice and not be overcome with paroxysms of hysterical laughter? But that’s just what he said: “It should be your personal choice. You should make the choice based on your health based on the decisions you want.” Cruz said it in public, he said it without so much as cracking a smile and he said it in front of the rigid and creaky and humor-free host of Fox and Friends Steve Doocy.
Cruz was talking about the “Vaccine Passport” which is a document — paper or digital — attesting that its bearer is immune to a contagious disease by virtue of having received one or more vaccinations. For what it’s worth White House Press Secretary Jean Psaki has already announced in language so clear that not even a Republican can misunderstand it that the Biden Administration has no intention whatsoever of issuing or requiring the issue of vaccine passports. That didn’t stop Doocy from introducing the segment with the words “the controversy continues to rage over vaccine passports.” His spokesman for the nay side of this nonexistent controversy was none other than Senator Ted Cruz.
Now the idea behind vaccine passports — and I say this once more for emphasis, it is NOT currently a requirement by the federal government and the federal government has specifically announced that it won’t be — is to ensure that people have been vaccinated against and are therefore less likely to carry the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus as a condition for travel or entry into certain venues. Cruz has nonetheless proposed legislation making a ban against vaccine passports standard across the country. In other words, Cruz wants to make a federal law banning a measure that the federal government has no intention of implementing federally.
But it gets worse. If the language Cruz employs to support his position sounds creepily familiar that’s because Cruz is too stupid to notice that he has hijacked his argument against vaccine passports from the argument for a woman’s right to choose. But that is where the similarity ends, because the spurious movement against vaccine passports is as far removed from a woman’s legitimate right to choose as the east is from the west.
The difference is so obvious that I shouldn’t need to explain it but remember, brothers and sisters, we’re dealing with Republicans here. The purpose of the coronavirus vaccine (which Cruz admits he’s had, of course) is to reduce the chance that human beings don’t infect other human beings with a horrible disease that can kill you or incapacitate you for life. The purpose of a woman’s right to choose is to remove one piece of undifferentiated protoplasm from her body that has the potential to be a human being one day if she allows it. But if she allows it to grow in her own body, the woman will be responsible for that human being for the next two decades and she may be poor or mentally unstable or simply doesn’t want to — it really doesn’t matter what the reason is because it’s her body and nobody else’s.
Coronavirus, on the other hand, doesn’t interrupt undifferentiated protoplasm from becoming a human being but actually kills or maims already living and breathing human beings with histories and families and friends who would be devastated if those human beings were crippled or killed. Nobody, if you’ll pardon the expression, gives a shit about undifferentiated protoplasm except religious wackos who claim to give a shit but really don’t. Get the difference?
So when Ted Cruz argues about a person’s right to chose what is done to their own bodies he’s demonstrating beyond the shadow of a doubt just how stupid he is. Because he’s counterfeiting an otherwise righteous argument for the right of a woman to rid her body of undifferentiated protoplasm and enlisted it in defense of some anti-vaxxer nut job who’s allowed Donald Trump to convince him or her that protecting his or her fellow creatures from a deadly disease somehow infringes on his or her civil rights.
Cruz should have gone back to Cancun instead. Cruz is what Shakespeare called a “three inch fool.” He’s completely out of his depth in any pool he tries to go swimming in. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.