Free People Who Mostly Did Not Resist

Boss talking to employees. To keep your jobs you'll need to play Russian Roulette every six months. Who's in?

Naomi Wolf has been taking a lot of heat on X (formerly Twitter) because of some comments she’s been making to people about vaccine mandates. For the most part (except in cases of children and some of the elderly) she is arguing that no one had to take the vaccine. For example she wrote:

Coercion is coercion. Force is force. I empathize with all of these difficult situations but I keep trying to make a crucial point: if we react to coercion as if it’s physical force, nothing keeps us from the death camps. There is a difference. None of the mandates were legal or moral but there should have been a lot more resistance. For everyone’s sake.1

And this:

I don’t mean to be unsympathetic here at all. My point is that if we give in short of the kinds of physical force that are down the line – if we treat state coercion as ‘force’ – nothing stands between us and actual physical state force. Fascism can get a lot worse that[sic] economic pressure.2

A lot of the reactions were more or less along the lines of, well, it was easy for you. You’re a Yale graduate, an author, etc. Or, you just don’t understand, we have to feed our families, etc. Here’s a comment by ElaineLiberty:

Naomi sounds like the very people who pushed the shots making excuses now that no one was “forced”. While I agree w her that all of us that were pressured should have pushed back hard and much sooner she’s too quick to discount the severe double binds many people were in3

And Naomi’s response to her:

I am not discounting the hard choices. I am putting them in historical context. They were awful but not Trail of Tears, not lynchings, not slavery, not cattle cars. We were still free people who mostly did not resist. If we don’t face the fact that that happened in our history, we are in grave danger.4 [emphasis mine]

Life is not fair. Of course it was easier for some than others to refuse the jab. They may have been self-employed, wealthy or had a sufficient retirement income. For some it was hard, particularly if you were young, with a young family, little savings, etc. No one is denying that the decision had far worse consequences for some than others. But no one had to take it. I’ve heard several people say to me something like, “Well, I only got it so I could keep working,” or “I only got it so I could travel.”

Photo of a woman with a gun to her head that has a covid shot for a barrel: Vaccine Roulette. Don't Play. (color version)I don’t understand that. It’s like saying, “I only played Russian Roulette to keep my job.” People risked their lives and their health. I know many people just did not know, but many knew there was risk and did it anyway. Some of those people who did it to provide for their families are now dead or maimed. They’ve burdened their families, the very thing they wanted to avoid.

The next time around, and unfortunately there probably will be a next time, they’re not going to make it any easier. 2020 – 2022 was the first salvo. Those of us who were largely unaffected (including myself) may face an easy decision with some very hard consequences. Let us not look back on what’s coming with regret:

And how we burned in the camps later, thinking: What would things have been like if every Security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say good-bye to his family? Or if, during periods of mass arrests, as for example in Leningrad, when they arrested a quarter of the entire city, people had not simply sat there in their lairs, paling with terror at every bang of the downstairs door and at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing left to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever else was at hand?… The Organs would very quickly have suffered a shortage of officers and transport and, notwithstanding all of Stalin’s thirst, the cursed machine would have ground to a halt! If…if…We didn’t love freedom enough. And even more – we had no awareness of the real situation…. We purely and simply deserved everything that happened afterward.5 [emphasis mine]

— Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn

The traditional Uncle Sam poster with this text: I Want YOU Not To Comply No Masks. No Mandates. No Bullshit.




  1. Naomi Wolf,
  2. Naomi Wolf,
  3. ElaineLiberty,
  4. Naomi Wolf,
  5. Solzhenitsyn, Aleksandr I. , The Gulag Archipelago 1918–1956,

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To keep your jobs you’ll need to play Russian Roulette every six months. Who’s in?

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