Chris Christie, in response to the measles outbreak and in his infinite wisdom, mentioned that “parents need to have some measure of choice” when it comes to vaccinating their children. Immediately after the New Jersey governor’s statement made the news, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New York (the three adjacent states) declared that they were putting the state of New Jersey under quarantine.
Various reasons were given for the quarantine. One anonymous official from New York said that “Christie taught us that it was perfectly fine to close down traffic whenever we want, so putting up blockades and calling in the national guard to man them is just the natural progression.” readme asked who was calling the shots on the quarantine, but the official backed off. “Whoah, if anyone wants to know that, we’re all supposed to point fingers at the secretary.”
Pennsylvania pointed out the quarantines in the name of public safety were totally okay. They said that their reasoning was also borrowed from Christie, from the time when he quarantined a woman who didn’t-actually-but-the-public-might-have-thought-she-did have ebola. On this occasion, Christie explicitly stated that his “first responsibility is to protect the public health and safety of the people of New Jersey.” Preventing against a very small chance of ebola falls under this category, but apparently stopping diphtheria, the flu, chickenpox, hepatitis, HPV, measles, whooping cough, mumps, rubella, polio, tetanus, etc (which is what vaccines do) doesn’t count as protecting the public health.
readme’s visit to the Delaware-New Jersey border was quite eventful. On the Delaware River, the dividing line between the two states, we found an island with Fort Delaware, a Civil War era military base. Normally home to historical reenactments, the fort was filled with volunteer actors who had taken to their new role as quarantine enforcers like CMU students take to caffeine addiction. One retired man gleefully jumped in the air, shouting “I haven’t had this much fun in years!” after he fired an actual cannonball towards the Jersey shore.
We’re sure Chris Christie has a really good reason for wanting to let parents endanger entire communities, if they so choose. Personal freedom is an American ideal, after all. However, his reasons might have more to do with his position as a possible contender for the Republican nomination for president in 2016, and the fact that Obama (the anti-Christ) said that vaccines should be mandatory. But that would be indecent to suggest, and readme is above such petty speculations.