There is some really bizarre ‘thinking’ when it come to Covid amnesty:
Over the past few years we have heard a lot about things like infectious diseases and how they can super-spread if we are not careful. Well, there are other things that are also infectious and can easily be spread. I refer to sloppy thinking, faulty reasoning, emotive reactions, and fear-soaked sentiments.
Far too many people simply react or simply emote. They do not engage in careful, critical thinking, nor do they seem to care about the basic principles of logic and rational thought. And if you happen to be a Christian, this is especially sad. I explain this further in a recent piece: https://billmuehlenberg.com/2022/10/31/not-to-think-is-a-sin/
But here I want to look at some of the rather foolish and reckless remarks being made about calls for holding our leaders to account as to how they handled the rona. As I have documented recently, many want some blanket amnesty for what has happened over the past few years. They want us to just forgive and forget and to move on.
In several pieces I explained why this is not a good idea. See here for example: https://billmuehlenberg.com/2022/11/04/now-they-want-amnesty/
But the critics keep coming along, usually misunderstanding what I said or misrepresenting what I wrote. Here then are some of the more foolish things they are saying about this. And sadly, there would be more than just these top ten.
One. No one is actually calling for amnesty.
The second link I feature above is a direct refutation of this claim. Of course they are asking for this. And it does not matter if the ‘A’ word is used or not – from the beginning there was always the assumption by the main players that they would be exempt from any liability or punishment for any wrongs they committed.
What they want is full immunity. What they want is full indemnity. They want to be let off the hook, which amounts to a pardon. In other words, they want amnesty for their activities – some of which amount to actual crimes and misdemeanors.
Two. Calling for something like a Nuremberg trial is disrespectful to those who endured the Holocaust and we should not compare Covid mismanagement to Nazi war criminals.
Those who disagree with Covid amnesty are NOT minimising the Holocaust nor saying the way folks handled Covid was identical to how the Nazis operated. The point of the Nuremberg trials was to bring to international, public justice some of those involved in great evil, and the death of so many. And plenty of experts would rightly claim that we had far more than mere “mismanagement” going on here during the rona years.
Some sort of public trial for some of the Big Statists and Big Pharma folks, to mention just a few who were involved in great evil, and the death of many, is also important. This too deserves full and proper justice. If folks don’t like the ‘Nuremberg’ word, fine, they can use another. But the horrific and sustained violation of human rights and civil liberties over the past few years demands some form of proper justice in proper courts of law.
Nor does it matter that some of these figures did harmful things deliberately, or knowingly, or in ignorance, or with the ‘best interests’ of society in mind. That is just the sort of thing a court would seek to ascertain, and if any punishments are meted out, they would be based upon those sorts of considerations.
Three. You want to drag every government official and expert into some big trial, just like they did at Nuremberg.
The Nuremberg trials of 1945-1946 were of course rather limited – they did NOT involve every single authority and official. All up there were 199 defendants who went on trial, of whom 161 were convicted. So it was a selective and judicious reckoning of those thought to be most deserving of some sort of trial. We would expect the same if any rona trials were held today.
Four. You should not claim that all our leaders and officials were involved in evil actions.
I never did! When I or others use words like ‘systemic’ and ‘entire governments’ that of course means just what I said in my previous articles: there were more involved here than just a few isolated individuals. There was high-level government malfeasance and injustice taking place. That does NOT mean every single person in government was involved or complicit.
Five There is still no comparison between the two. For example, people were not forced to get the jab and so on.
As I said, we are not making any sort of exact comparisons here. But certainly similarities can be found. And when you are threatened with loss of work, income, travel, education, the ability to feed your family, and most basic civil liberties and human rights, you WERE forced to take the jab.
That IS coercion pure and simple. And this DOES violate most of our human rights charters and declarations. I have listed these before. In one article I quoted from a number of them. For example, the Australian Immunisation Handbook (from the Australian Government Department of Health) said this in part:
For consent to be legally valid, the following elements must be present:
-It must be given by a person with legal capacity, and of sufficient intellectual capacity to understand the implications of receiving a vaccine.
-It must be given voluntarily in the absence of undue pressure, coercion or manipulation.
-It must cover the specific procedure that is to be performed.
-It can only be given after the potential risks and benefits of the relevant vaccine, the risks of not having it, and any alternative options have been explained to the person.
-The person must have the opportunity to seek more details or explanations about the vaccine or its administration.
And the Nuremberg Code, 1947 said this:
The voluntary consent of the human subject is absolutely essential. This means that the person involved should have legal capacity to give consent; should be so situated as to be able to exercise free power of choice, without the intervention of any element of force, fraud, deceit, duress, overreaching, or other ulterior form of constraint or coercion; and should have sufficient knowledge and comprehension of the elements of the subject matter involved as to enable him to make an understanding and enlightened decision. https://billmuehlenberg.com/2021/10/10/the-vital-necessity-of-informed-medical-consent/
So we need to stop living in dreamland here. We need to stop making cheap excuses for the very real health fascism and government overreach that we endured for so long, with so many very real negative results – including death for some.
Six. You guys should stop baying for blood, seeking revenge, and trying to be a lynch mob.
Oh dear. Seeking justice is NOT about revenge or being a lynch mob – it is seeking justice, which is vitally important in any civilised society. Without justice we are reduced to the level of animals. That is why courts exist. That is why trials happen. That is why bodies like the International Criminal Court exist.
Seeking public justice is also vitally important because God loves justice and he hates injustice. But more on this in a moment.
Seven. You have already judged these people and found them to be guilty.
Um, to argue for some sort of public accountability here is NOT to assume guilt but to ascertain guilt. That is what courts and trials are all about. Those who have actually read my pieces carefully know that I sought to make one major point: when injustice on a large scale takes place, especially from the top down, then there is a fundamental need for justice – for accountability. That is how civilised societies operate.
‘Justice delayed is justice denied’ is how the old legal maxim goes. The idea that we should just offer blanket amnesty and forget about justice, and all the obvious injustice that has occurred will only mean these sorts of things will be so much easier to happen in the future.
If our ruling elites know how very easy it is to keep the masses under their feet and strip them of most freedoms and human rights, and they get no resistance to this in the form of some sort of public trial and accountability, then they will simply run with more of it in the days ahead
Eight. Christians believe in grace and that should be what we extend to our rulers and officials.
It is always foolish in the extreme – and quite unbiblical – to attempt to set justice over against grace. This is not simply another indication of faulty thinking, but a good way to undermine biblical authority. The very epitome of God’s grace – the cross – is where mercy and justice fully meet. Justice was NOT cast aside there.
And the whole purpose of government is to administer justice. While the church can show mercy to sinners, the state is set up by God to punish criminals and wrongdoers. To dispense with justice would be to dispense with the very reason why God set up civil government in the first place.
And mercy and justice fully cohere. We are not to pick one at the expense of the other. And appealing to a verse like James 2:13 is not very helpful – especially ripping it out of context. But see more on that passage here: https://billmuehlenberg.com/2015/02/21/difficult-bible-passages-james-213/
Nine. Christians are to simply forgive.
I already covered that in some detail in the first piece I linked to above. But let me offer a brief summary of what I said there: If an individual wants to forgive a boss who fired him, or a doctor who coerced him into unwanted medical treatments, or a politician who shut down his business, that is up to him.
But we are not just talking about a few bad eggs here and there. We are talking about systemic and massive harm being done by the political classes, by medical and scientific boards, and by other collective groupings. Moreover, Jesus said that our forgiveness is dependent on their repentance.
Ten. ‘I am not here to argue about this.’
Although this is a less worrying remark, it still deserves attention, as it often arises, not just here, but in other discussions and debates. I get this happening to me quite often. Someone will come along and make an argument. That is, they will come along and disagree with something I said, seeking to correct me. That is what an argument is.
However, then they will say this: ‘But I’m not trying to start an argument’. Um, they just did! They started off with an argument. And then when you respond, they will jump right back in with even more arguments! In one recent case the person said they simply meant they did not want any responses to what they had just said.
But to publicly disagree with someone while also wanting no responses from them is about as useful as saying you want to take part in a duel with someone but expect the other person not to shoot. As the old saying goes, ‘If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen’! Either stay and make your case in a civil fashion, or don’t get involved in the first place!
In sum, it is all rather sad that I have to spend so much time restating the obvious. But the very fact that I have to keep reaffirming basic truths with some folks simply shows how poorly some people ‘think’ and ‘argue’. They often will go off on a knee-jerk reaction without properly reflecting and assessing things. Such is the culture we now find ourselves living in.