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Argumentative Essay: Compulsory Covid-19 Vaccinations

As the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic, whether vaccinations should be mandatory for everyone has become a hot topic of debate. While some argue that mandating vaccinations violates personal freedom and autonomy, others believe it is necessary to ensure public health and safety. In this essay, I will say that vaccinations for COVID-19 should be made mandatory for everyone. I will use two sources to support my argument: “Vaccine Mandates in the Time of COVID-19” by Jamison Chung, Aaron Kaufman, and Brianna Rauenzahn, and “The Ethics of Selective Mandatory Vaccination for COVID-19” by Bridget M. Williams.

One of the main arguments favoring mandatory vaccinations for COVID-19 is that it is necessary to protect public health. As Chung et al. (2021) note, the COVID-19 pandemic has already claimed millions of lives worldwide, and vaccines are one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of the disease. By mandating vaccinations, governments can ensure that a large percentage of the population is protected, which can help reduce the number of infections and deaths. As noted by Chung et al. (2021), in the absence of a cure or universally effective treatment, vaccination is the most effective tool to contain the spread of the virus. In this sense, vaccination is a public good that benefits everyone. It protects the vaccinated individual and those around them, particularly vulnerable groups more susceptible to severe illness or death from the virus. Therefore, mandatory vaccination programs are necessary to protect the public’s health and safety. Williams (2022) also argues that selective mandatory vaccination can be justified for public health as long as it is designed to promote the greatest good for the most significant number of people.

Additionally, obligatory vaccinations for COVID-19 would lessen the spread of the virus immensely. The vaccine is very efficacious in stopping severe sickness and hospitalization, and by extension, it eases the burden on healthcare systems. Mandatory vaccination has been employed successfully to prevent the spread of contagious diseases and can further prevent the spread of COVID-19. An article issued by Chung et al. (2021) contends that obligatory vaccination is essential to attain herd immunity, which is vital in containing the spread of the virus (Chung et al., 2021). Herd immunity transpires when enough individuals are immune to a disease that cannot spread fast within a population. This can be accomplished through vaccination and natural immunity, but the former is the adequate way to reach herd immunity. Mandatory vaccination ensures that a considerable portion of the population is vaccinated, lessening the spread of the virus and safeguarding those who cannot get vaccinated.

Opponents of mandatory vaccinations argue that it violates personal freedom and autonomy. They say individuals have the right to make healthcare decisions, including whether or not to get vaccinated. However, this argument overlooks that individual actions can have significant consequences for others. Williams (2022) notes that individuals who refuse vaccinations put themselves at risk and others who may contract the virus from them. Therefore, mandatory vaccinations can be justified to protect individuals’ rights to life and health. Additionally, the argument that individuals should have the right to choose whether to vaccinate or not ignores the reality that individual choices can have negative consequences for society, especially in the case of public health issues such as COVID-19. Moreover, as Chung et al. (2021) point out, the government already mandates vaccines for certain diseases, such as measles and polio, so mandatory vaccinations for COVID-19 would not be unprecedented.

According to Williams (2022), mandating vaccinations for COVID-19 is ethically justified. The author highlights the principles of distributive justice and solidarity, which require individuals to contribute to the public good by taking the necessary actions to prevent the spread of disease. Williams argues that mandatory vaccination is an effective way to ensure the common good by protecting the most vulnerable members of society. Moreover, the author suggests that vaccination mandates should be based on scientific evidence and implemented transparently and equitably. The article also suggests that selective mandatory vaccination could be more acceptable than universal mandates. It respects individual autonomy while ensuring that those who pose a risk to others are vaccinated.

In summary, while there are valid concerns about personal freedom and autonomy, the benefits of mandatory vaccinations for COVID-19 far outweigh the costs. Vaccines are a crucial tool in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, and mandating vaccinations can help protect public health, achieve herd immunity, and save lives. As Chung et al. (2021) note, vaccine mandates should be designed to balance public health with individual rights. Ultimately, the government protects its citizens from highly contagious and deadly diseases.


Vaccine Mandates in the Time of COVID-19

In “Vaccine Mandates in the Time of COVID-19,” the authors discuss vaccine mandates’ ethical and legal implications during a public health crisis. The article notes that while vaccine mandates are not new, the urgency of the COVID-19 pandemic has brought them to the forefront of general discussion. The authors argue that mandatory vaccination can effectively control the spread of the virus, particularly in high-risk settings such as healthcare facilities and schools. The article also highlights the challenges of implementing vaccine mandates, including legal and practical barriers. Overall, the authors support vaccine mandates to promote public health but caution that they must be implemented carefully to avoid violating individual rights.

The Ethics of Selective Mandatory Vaccination for COVID-19

In “The Ethics of Selective Mandatory Vaccination for COVID-19,” the author argues that while mandatory vaccination is generally justified during a public health crisis, selective compulsory vaccination may be more ethically defensible. The article suggests that mandatory vaccination policies should be tailored to specific populations based on risk factors such as age, occupation, and health status. The author notes that compulsory vaccination policies can be coercive and may violate individual autonomy but argues that selective policies can balance individual rights with the public health benefits of vaccination. The article also discusses the challenges of implementing particular mandatory vaccination, including issues of fairness and equity. Overall, the author suggests that selective compulsory vaccination may be a more ethical approach than blanket mandates.


Chung, J., Kaufman, A., & Rauenzahn, B. (2021). Vaccine Mandates in the Time of COVID-19. Regulatory Review.

Williams, B. M. (2022). The ethics of selective mandatory vaccination for COVID-19. Public Health Ethics, 15(1), 74-86.


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