This is a very impressive young woman. Her leaving the military academy is a loss for our country.
In the spring of 2021 during my first year at the U.S. Military Academy, I was told that my decision to reject getting the “optional” COVID-19 vaccine would not negatively affect my time as a cadet at West Point.
That quickly changed. My Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act medical privacy rights were violated when my vaccination status was released to members of the freshman class and upperclassmen who were planning our summer details, to which an officer stated, “HIPAA isn’t the be-all, end-all.”
Before leaving for the summer, the unvaccinated were forced to attend a “re-education brief” led only by vaccinated personnel. Unvaccinated personnel were not allowed on the panel and it became a very hostile environment of us-versus-them. In this three-hour brief, our questions about natural immunity and health concerns were disregarded and labeled “unscientific.”
During summer training, my unvaccinated friends and I were segregated, ostracized, and mocked. We endured rude comments, while others pointed and laughed at us for being in the “dirty” platoon of only unvaccinated (and therefore masked) cadets. Cadets yelled that we were the “sick” or “dirty” or “anti-science” platoon. Officers told trainees to stay away from us.
After returning to the academy in the fall, unvaccinated cadets were subjected to COVID testing twice a week at 6:00 a.m., even if we didn’t have COVID symptoms. Even though the vaccinated can also contract and transmit COVID, they were not tested, and those who felt sick were denied COVID tests. The leadership purposefully made life miserable for unvaccinated cadets, in what I can only conclude was an attempt to convince us to violate our consciences and blindly follow the rest of the herd.