This should terrify all of us

JD08

Non-attorney spokesperson
Joined
Dec 19, 2014
Messages
9,036
Nobody said anything about Typhoid Mary being imprisoned for life for the crime of being an asymptomatic carrier. The press would rally around the public officials in the name of public health.
 

TheEye

Cane Grad!
Joined
Feb 12, 2013
Messages
4,441
Nobody said anything about Typhoid Mary being imprisoned for life for the crime of being an asymptomatic carrier. The press would rally around the public officials in the name of public health.
Because it was proven that Mary presented a Clear and Present danger to her fellow citizens.
 

For_The_U

All ACC
Joined
Feb 21, 2018
Messages
5,517
Nobody said anything about Typhoid Mary being imprisoned for life for the crime of being an asymptomatic carrier. The press would rally around the public officials in the name of public health.
That is the 1st time I've ever heard about Typhoid Mary, believe it or not. What a wild story!
 

For_The_U

All ACC
Joined
Feb 21, 2018
Messages
5,517
People are routinely held up to 14 days … often without charges.
Good point. And there are unquestionably major issues with our criminal justice system. But it is hard to compare a criminal detention to a "local health official" at "his or her sole discretion", on almost purely subjective criteria, single handedly being the determinator on a person or even groups of people being forcibly detained against their will, IMO. They are both potentially problematic, yes, by they are by no means apples and apples.
 

JD08

Non-attorney spokesperson
Joined
Dec 19, 2014
Messages
9,036
There is one thing that supercedes the constitution, and it is Clear and Present danger.
I know Lincoln suspended habeus corpus and I'm aware there are exceptions for rebellion, invasion, and public safety.

I had forgotten that Mary Mallon had been released after three years under the condition that she not work with food and followed hygiene practices, but changed her name and became a cook again.
 

IndayArtHauz

Inane Source
Staff member
Joined
Jan 27, 2012
Messages
7,181
Because it was proven that Mary presented a Clear and Present danger to her fellow citizens.
So did a thousand other people tested at the time. TM was far from the only person spreading Typhoid, in fact the only ways she was different from anyone else were that she was asymptomatic (at a time when no one knew what that meant), continued to cook (and make people sick) as a profession despite being ordered not to, and spread the disease of the poor amongst the wealthy.

None of these decisions are black and white, but Typhoid Mary is a flawed anecdote from history and not a template for modern day enforcement. Her life was destroyed and yet she still killed people from a combination of ignorance (on both sides) and good intentions. I don’t know what we can learn from her story but “forced confinement saves lives” isn’t the whole story.
 

JD08

Non-attorney spokesperson
Joined
Dec 19, 2014
Messages
9,036
So did a thousand other people tested at the time. TM was far from the only person spreading Typhoid, in fact the only ways she was different from anyone else were that she was asymptomatic (at a time when no one knew what that meant), continued to cook (and make people sick) as a profession despite being ordered not to, and spread the disease of the poor amongst the wealthy.

None of these decisions are black and white, but Typhoid Mary is a flawed anecdote from history and not a template for modern day enforcement. Her life was destroyed and yet she still killed people from a combination of ignorance (on both sides) and good intentions. I don’t know what we can learn from her story but “forced confinement saves lives” isn’t the whole story.
That's on me. I had forgotten that she was released at one point, but continued to work in kitchens.
 

TheEye

Cane Grad!
Joined
Feb 12, 2013
Messages
4,441
So did a thousand other people tested at the time. TM was far from the only person spreading Typhoid, in fact the only ways she was different from anyone else were that she was asymptomatic (at a time when no one knew what that meant), continued to cook (and make people sick) as a profession despite being ordered not to, and spread the disease of the poor amongst the wealthy.

None of these decisions are black and white, but Typhoid Mary is a flawed anecdote from history and not a template for modern day enforcement. Her life was destroyed and yet she still killed people from a combination of ignorance (on both sides) and good intentions. I don’t know what we can learn from her story but “forced confinement saves lives” isn’t the whole story.
Right, however being symptomatic, means you are easily identifiable as being sick and therefore subject to quarantine until your case subsides, or you die. Also, defying orders to no longer endanger people by continuing to prepare food when it was proved she was contagious is the clear and present danger. So, no, she was, in fact, different than every other sick person out there with typhoid.
 

For_The_U

All ACC
Joined
Feb 21, 2018
Messages
5,517
There is one thing that supercedes the constitution, and it is Clear and Present danger.
My angst isn't at having a governmental mechanism for forced quarantine in extreme situations... it's the fact that determination under this law is made at the "SOLE DISCRETION" of a "local health officer" (how many people does that term even apply to?) and is basically completely unfettered with any checks and balances until after the person has been forcefully quarantined. Literally, this local level health employee simply has to show they have reason to believe the person is infected . . . or even just has "reason to believe they were exposed" (couldn't you argue that applies to damn near everyone in our country right now)? Then, they don't even have to ATTEMPT voluntarily quarantine if they "have determined in his or her professional judgment that seeking voluntary compliance would create a risk of serious harm". What kind of standard is that?!?

All of these decisions are made willy nilly by some local health guy? And on his discretion alone, the police can come drag you out of your house in cuffs without even asking you voluntarily first? And then you find yourself locked up and, oh yeah, now you can get an attorney and maybe a hearing in a few days and argue why you shouldn't be confined in a cage. What?!?

That is a very terrifying concept, and you have to be naive as hell not to think a system without such checks and balances won't inevitably be used for nefarious purposes. Remember, this applies to groups of people as well. So let's play out a fact pattern....

Power Hungry Inslee has a dozen local gym owners show up at state hall to protest that they are financially collapsing because they can't work. Ok, fair enough. But then, low and behold, here come those right-wing crazies with their AR-15s to join the protest as well. Inslee doesn't like them at all! Suddenly, a "local health officer" decides he has reason to believe one of them may have been exposed (man, is that an easy standard), they clearly "pose a serious and imminent risk to the health and safety of others if not detained" (I mean, just look at them!), and unquestionably asking these riled up people with guns to self-quarantine has a "risk of serious harm". Boom! Every single one of them are forcibly detained on the spot and locked up for 10 days. Their recourse? Sue later.

After witnessing this COVID event, that should send chills down the spine of every American who understands the basic tenets this country was founded on.
 
Last edited:

NC_Canes_11

Recruit
Joined
Jul 5, 2017
Messages
3,228
Look up the court case from the Ebola days a few years ago. I think the nurse was in Maine or Mass. It is much harder to prove the person is a “clear and present danger,” to themselves and others than that legislation shows.
 
Top