Assembly Bill A6676 (DiPietro-R) and Senate Bill S118 (Gallivan-R) would restore the religious exemption for pre-school and K-12 students in New York that was eliminated by the Democrats when they finally got control of the Governorship and both legislative houses in 2019.
One thing that should be clear to everyone is that the disastrously bad performance by the public health authorities and public officials in New York in response to COVID should preclude them from making healthcare decisions for individuals and our children ever again. They should never be allowed to mandate a medical procedure for anyone. We can begin to undo the damage by passing A6676/S118.
We need as many members of both houses as possible to co-sponsor these bills by Asm. David DiPietro and Sen. Patrick Gallivan. We are coming into an election year, and we need to know exactly where all the legislators stand on this bill.
Please use the panel at the right to send a message to your State Senator and Assemblymember expressing your support for A6676/S118 and asking them to co-sponsor the bill.
Please contact your State Senator and Assemblymember ask them to co-sponsor A6676/S118. Currently A6676 has no co-sponsors yet in the Assembly. S118 is co-sponsored by Senators Ashby, Borello, Mattera, Murray, Rhoads and Weik. We need to get as many co-sponsors as possible.
You can look up your Senator’s and Assemblymember’s name and contact information here:
Proponents of the repeal like to pretend it was about public health and herd immunity. It was never about that. Only one half of one percent of students in New York had religious exemptions in 2019, which is 1/10th to 1/20th of the rate purported to have an impact on herd immunity. They never could, and still cannot, provide a single incident of a child with an exemption causing an outbreak. And there is nobody of studies showing better health outcomes in states without religious exemptions. The science is just not there. Repealing the religious exemption was about money and power.
The New York Democrats followed the lead of California to make New York one of only 6 (now 5) states that do not allow religious exemptions from vaccine mandates to attend school for religious, philosophical, or other reasons of conscience. Up until California repealed their religious exemption in 2016 the only states that did not have religious exemptions were West Virginia and Mississippi. But then the Democrats discovered that doing whatever the vaccine industry wanted was the ticket to a steady flow of pharma money, so, all of a sudden, Mississippi became the model for enlightened public health policy and Constitutional rights.
A federal court earlier this year found that Mississippi violated the first amendment rights of Mississippians by not allowing religious exemptions. The Court ordered Mississippi to provide exemptions by July of this year for the first time in 45 years. Similar lawsuits have been filed in New York and other states. Currently, in addition to New York, the only other states without exemptions for religion or conscience are Maine, Connecticut, California, and West Virginia.
We also saw during COVID that most powerful institutions: New York State Government, legislators, New York City, big corporations, unions, especially public employee unions, have complete contempt for the consciences of individuals, especially if an individual’s choice could be labelled as “religious.”
One thing that COVID showed us is that personal healthcare decisions are far too important to be left to politicians, bureaucrats, physicians, medical service conglomerates and insurance companies, or employers. Each of those groups have completely different sets of priorities and incentives and are far too compromised to be entrusted to make medical decisions for individuals or their children. And, as we have seen in abundance, the decisionmaker never suffers any consequence when medical care goes wrong, as it so often does. Only the individual or child who are subject to the decision by powerful, frequently indifferent, sometimes malevolent, institutions, suffer the consequences.
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