Should We Criminalize Public Health Authorities, Politicians, & Employers Who Spread Misinformation about Vaccine Mandates?

Note that views expressed in this opinion article are the writer’s personal views and not necessarily those of TrialSite.

The medical journal BMJ published a provocative commentary in February 2021, Should we criminalize those who spread misinformation about vaccines? Obviously, intentionally misleading people by spreading misinformation about vital public health issues like vaccines can have serious consequences, and the public deserves to be protected from this sort of deliberate harm. But what if the people who spread vaccine misinformation don’t realize the information is false, and what if they don’t intend to mislead others? Unfortunately, even without intent to harm or mislead, the public could still be seriously harmed from false information, and the BMJ article discussed potential censorship and enforcement of legal charges in these circumstances. But the BMJ commentary examined these issues only from the perspective of people ordered to comply with vaccine mandates. What about the public health authorities, politicians, and employers enforcing the mandates on their workers and the general public? Shouldn’t they also be held accountable for spreading misinformation abo...

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