There was a comment on this article which said "Now do the same thing for Vaccines"
th4 This article does a really good job of defending bodily autonomy, but once I saw this comment I had trouble explaining to myself exactly why this argument didn't work equally well for vaccines. I felt very strongly that it shouldn't, but I didn't think I had a strong enough argument yet to refute people who would claim that it should. I read your article while I was still thinking about the response I was preparing, and used my response to you as a way of thinking out loud. It seems intuitively obvious to me that these cases are vastly different, but I don’t feel comfortable until I have rational arguments backing up my intuitions. I made this comment while in the middle of creating those arguments, which I think should be stronger than what I have so far, given how intuitively obvious the conclusion is.
I know a lot of people used the "Devil's advocate" excuse to express their own racist and sexist views by putting them into the mouth of an imaginary opponent. That was not my intention, but I should have realized my words could be taken that way. I'm sorry I expressed myself so badly.
Your photo essay, besides capturing beautifully the characters and the scene of those demonstrations, really documents how deeply those people have committed themselves to the bodily autonomy arguments of pro-choice, and that they really have no rational way of accepting pro-choice on abortion if they remain pro-choice on vaccines. (of course, because they are not rational, they probably won’t see this.) But unless we can draw a distinction between the two arguments, we have similar dilemma if we want to reject the bodily autonomy arguments for vaccine choice. That is all I meant when I said “they can say the same thing about us.” I didn’t mean to imply that Liberals used conservative rhetoric, but my use of “same thing” was vague, so I can see why you thought that’s what I meant.
As you and I both pointed out, the most obvious difference is that vaccine resistance puts thousands of people at risk for death, whereas a late-term abortion only kills one “person” whose personhood is very dubious anyway. Is that the only difference? That might be enough, but I think the difference is great enough that there ought to be a stronger argument than that. As I was writing this, a friend pointed out that vaccines are voluntary, as the worst that can happen to you is the loss of a job if you don’t get one, whereas the new forced birth laws can put you in jail if you don’t follow them. That makes the disanalogy even stronger, but I still think there are more important disanalogies to uncover. And I think there is a good chance a really strong argument against this position will be needed, because we probably will start hearing from Anti-vaxers who are pro-choice on the abortion issue.