Florida is rapidly replacing Texas as the most pro-freedom state in the Union amid the coronavirus pandemic that has tested our elected officials’ commitment to the rights and freedoms guaranteed to us by the U.S. Constitution.
What we’ve discovered is that Texas isn’t as free as many Americans once thought.
The “Don’t mess with Texas” mantra has become more like “Don’t mess with DeSantis” as Florida leads the nation in preserving traditional American values.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed an executive order on Tuesday banning government-imposed vaccine passports as “millions of Texans have already recovered from COVID-19 and thus required some degree of immunity.”
Texans shouldn't be required to show proof of vaccination & reveal private health information just to go about their daily lives.
I issued an Executive Order that prohibits government-mandated vaccine passports in Texas.
Don't tread on our personal freedoms. pic.twitter.com/weTbz4FKyH
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) April 6, 2021
Abbott stated although the state strongly encourages Texans to get the coronavirus vaccine, it “is always voluntary and will never be mandated by the government.”
Likewise, for vaccine passports, “an individual’s COVID-19 vaccination status is private health information,” therefore, “no governmental entity should compel disclosure of this information by mandating a so-called ‘vaccine passport’ or by otherwise conditioning a receipt of services on an individual’s COVID-19 vaccination status.”
Taking it a step further, Abbott added that if the federal government were to impose a national vaccine passport requirement, Texas would not comply.
Since the U.S. Constitution “does not empower federal government to mandate nationwide vaccine passports for COVID-19,” Texas will not use their “police power that is reserved to the States under our system of Federalism” to enforce them, if the Biden White House imposed such passports.
While the Texas governor’s order is necessary in the event that the White House seizes this opportunity to grab power, the order only applies to the state government, unlike Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ order which also applies to private businesses.
The order DeSantis signed last Friday states that, in addition to the state government, Florida businesses are “prohibited from requiring patrons or customers to provide any documentation certifying” vaccination or post-transmission recovery.
Any private business that does require vaccine passports or similar certification will be ineligible to receive grants or contracts funded through state revenue.
Florida’s governor believes, “So-called COVID-19 vaccine passports reduce individual freedom and will harm patient privacy,” and “would create two classes of citizens based on vaccination.”
While we should always be skeptical of government regulations on private businesses, this type of restriction is necessary to disincentivize private companies and businesses from infringing on our individual rights and liberties.
The executive order DeSantis signed last week serves as model legislation all states across America must pass to preserve freedom as we know it in America. Because once major airlines, grocery stores, banks, and other places of business, begin requiring proof of vaccination from customers, there may be no turning back.