[conspire] (forw) Not an antivaxxer, nosirree

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Sat May 15 21:55:34 PDT 2021

----- Forwarded message from Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com> -----

Date: Sat, 15 May 2021 21:49:47 -0700
From: Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com>
To: skeptic at linuxmafia.com
Subject: Not an antivaxxer, nosirree
Organization: If you lived here, you'd be $HOME already.

I wrote:

> paying good money for fakes, as the relevant purchase decision is:
> 1.  real vaccination card _with vaccination_ totally for free, or
> 2.  bogus vaccination card (lacking vaccination) for US $20.
> It takes a _special_ type of moron to consider an expensive fake to be
> a better deal than the real thing for free.

A day passed, and...

I encountered one today -- well, one who had sufficient motive.  He
either might or might not have lied and claimed to be vaccinated in a
place that requires the real thing -- but people like him are the
obvious market for fake CDC vaccination record cards.  

A week ago today, I took the bold step of having my Linux user group
(CABAL) meet in-person on the regular scheduled 2nd Saturday, instead of
just on Jitsi Meet (very like Zoom, except completely open source), as
we'd been doing for a year.  _But_ rather than just saying "Great,
emergency over, no more videoconferencing", I tried hard to run a
symbiotic "hybrid" meeting:  Remote people gathered and interacted with
each other over Jitsi Meet (as they've been doing for a year), but
_also_ all of those people were visible on a laptop displaying Jitsi
Meet in my back yard, so that people present in-person could
individually or together interact with the online people.  To improve
matters, I used a nice outboard USB-connected microphone on a stand with
good background noise-rejection, and a pair of external speakers.


This experiment worked pretty well, so last night I offered a
description of how I did it to some other Linux user groups, including
[name of LUG elided].  This is where things went sideways.  Readers may
know that [place name elided] is one of the RWNJ and religious-kook
centres of California.

My meeting invitation for the May 8th CABAL meeting/BBQ prominently
featured this (quoted from the 2nd URL above):


WHO MAY ATTEND?  You must:

o  Be COVID-19 vaccinated, plus enough time for ramped-up immunity.
o  Feel it's safe to be here in company.
o  Agree this is at your own risk.

Bring your CDC card:  Assume I may check.


Apparently this _really_ set off one of [name of LUG]'s most active
members, one KT.  I've been aware for some time that KT is a fundie
(because he frequently mentions this datum), but I don't pick fights
with fundies and attempt to live-and-let-live them -- which works until
it does not.

Remember I asked the other day, rhetorically, who in Gehenna would pay
$20 for a fake CDC certificate rather than get a real certificate plus
vaccine protection for free?  Hold on, because we're about to get an

Late last night, in response to my roadmap of how *I* chose to run a
hybrid meeting in my back yard, KT responded with a strongly worded
posting claiming with no expressed doubt or qualifiers that it is
grossly illegal to require anyone to produce a confidential medical

SPOILER:  The above was stupid and erroneous, to be sure, but it also
turns out that it's a phony reason:  KT was lying.  He didn't think
that, and his objection to the notion of checking CDC certificates for
in-person [name of LUG] meetings was something else entirely.  His
bullshit of last night was _totally_ disingenuous.

Before going to sleep, last night, I debunked KT's claim.  I said he
should logically have disclosed _what_ law CDC certificate gatekeeping would
allegedly violate -- but I happen to know this area of law really well,
so his difficulty would be that there is no such law.

I said he had a lot of effrontery suggesting I had no legal right to
permit onto my property only persons who met my conditions, and if he
had a problem with my having sole title to 1105 Altschul Ave., Menlo
Park, he would need to take it up with San Mateo County's District
Attorney, and good luck with that.

I said that attending a volunteer user group event is not subject to
discrimination regulation like employment or housing or being a
customer, and also that "isn't vaccinated" is not a protected class
under discrimination law.  I pointed out that California's blueprint for
re-opening the state economy by June 15th _specifically_ provides for
venues checking vaccination status -- so, unless he seriously wanted to
claim that California doesn't understand California law, he's just
completely and obviously wrong.

_And_ I pointed out that people have been requested and required to
provide proof of vaccination for many decades at least, in the form
(among other things) of needing to show vaccination before admission to
elementary and high schools and colleges.

By morning, KT was starting to shift ground while claiming not to,
saying sorry, he hadn't noticed I was limiting my analysis to access to
my own house.  (I hadn't done that.)  

I recapped my prior points -- and asked if he really felt it was
wrongful and illegal every time a school required a child's vaccination

And that got us to today's Jitsi Meet conference for [name of LUG],
where there was a good technical talk about WordPress security -- but
then KT broached the vaccination subject.  He said (closely

"We're among friends here, so I wanted to disclose that my real concern
is that I am not willing to have any of the vaccines, because they were
all developed using fetal stem-cell cultures.  But I'm not an antivaxxer
or anything.  [Seriously, he said that.]  And the other thing is that
the three vaccines don't have full FDA approval, only an emergency use
authorization.  So, I'd hate to not be able to attend a [name of LUG]
meeting, and I put in a lot of effort to set them up.  But anyway, it's
completely wrongful for [name of LUG] to require people to disclose
confidential medical documentation."

When I was able to speak, I passed politely over the fact that his
entire previous line of objection had been dishonest -- and merely
addressed his "require people to disclose" bushwah.

"When I tell people they're welcome to attend the in-person CABAL
meeting but should bring their CDC certificates and assume I might check
them, that is not 'requiring' anything.  Being allowed to walk into a
user group meeting is not a public entitlement.  Persons unwilling to
comply with the group's entry requirements are not wronged when they're
told it's like the amusement park where you must be this-high or you may
not board the ride.  That sign doesn't require persons to be this-high;
it just says if they're not, they won't be riding today."

As it turns out, because [name of LUG]'s in-person venue is at [name of
university], they'll probably need a few months to straighten out [name
of university]'s rules for being there, anyway.

After the videoconference, another aspect of KT's effrontery occurred to
me:  The proposal of adding a _hybrid_ aspect to [name of LUG]'s
existing Jitsi Meet events would have taken nothing at all away from
him.  His preference is to be on Jitsi Meet.  He could continue to do
that, under the proposal.  In effect, he was saying "I object to an
extension to [name of LUG]'s meetings even existing for others' benefit,
whose entry requirements I refuse to satisfy, because it bothers me that
other people are having fun in public in a way I am not willing to do."
So, not only was he flagrantly dishonest about the nature of his
objection, and not only was his claim of illegality something he either
knew or should have known (because of school vaccination requirements)
was outright false, but also his _real_ reason was strictly a
dog-in-the-manger one of wishing to deprive others of something merely
because he would not wish to avail _himself_ of it.

And, a few minutes ago, I remembered my rhetorical question about
customers of that Stockton dive-bar owner:  Who would pay $20 for a fake
certificate, when one can get for free a real certificate plus a
miraculously successful vaccine against a deadly disease that's already
killed 580,000 Americans?

Well, presumably someone who objects to that miraculous vaccination on
religious and ideological grounds, and who is provably dishonest even in
talking about the subject -- that sort of person might.

Today I learned.

----- End forwarded message -----

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